How fast this year is moving! In case you missed it, my husband and I had some really exciting news we shared earlier this month so my days have suddenly become busy and filled with lots of preparation and paperwork. Amidst the crazy excitement though, I have scheduled in some time during the wee hours of the morning to practice my current favorite method of self care: reading. I'm curious, what are some ways YOU practice self care?
I was recently given a wonderful opportunity by Bethany House Publishers to gain a copy of the newly released novel, A Refuge Assured, by Jocelyn Green. Friends, I couldn't put it down!
* I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts below are my own. Also, this blog post includes affiliate links which means I will receive a commission based on sales generated via these links.
Captivating & Suspenseful... A detailed look at French émigré life in America after the Revolutionary War.
This beautiful story weaves the lives of strong, engaging characters in an exciting series of events while offering a storyline rich in historic details that is sure to delight any historical fiction enthusiast.
Fleeing One Revolution to the Aftermath of Another, She Seeks and Dreams of Peace
Lacemaker Vivienne Rivard never imagined her craft could threaten her life. Yet in revolutionary France, it is a death sentence when the nobility, and those associated with them, are forced to the guillotine. Vivienne flees to Philadelphia, but danger lurks in the French Quarter, as revolutionary sympathizers begin to suspect a young boy left in her care might be the Dauphin. Can the French settlement Asylum offer permanent refuge?
Militiaman Liam Delaney proudly served in the American Revolution, but now that the new government has imposed an oppressive tax that impacts his family, he barely recognizes the democracy he fought for. He wants only to cultivate his hard-won farm near Asylum, but he soon finds himself drawn into the escalating tension of the Whiskey Rebellion. When he meets a beautiful young Frenchwoman recently arrived from Paris, they are drawn together in surprising ways to fight for the peace and safety for which they long. - Synopsis from A Refuge Assured
★★★★★ Book Number 3/50 | War, suspense, mystery, determination, faith and romance... From the gorgeous cover to the heartwarming ending, this story is sure to win the hearts of its readers. Early on in this captivating novel, the author, Jocelyn Green, introduces readers to French émigré, Vivienne Rivard, who must flee her beloved home in France to save her own life. Vivienne faces the heartbreaking loss of her dear aunt and learns the details of her estranged mother's questionable past, while living life in a country ravaged by the horrors of the French Revolution. We follow her journey overseas to America, where readers meet Liam Delaney, a former militiaman in the American Revolution just years prior. Throughout the early storyline, additional, supportive characters enter and lay the foundation for exciting plot twists which add a sense of mystery to the novel.
I thoroughly enjoyed the pace of this book as well as the suspense that builds from the events taking place throughout the story. The author depicts an accurate peek into the gut-wrenching perils of the French Revolution, portrays early American life beautifully and details major historical events such as the Whiskey Rebellion while bringing historical figures like Alexander Hamilton and Monsieur Omer Talon to life. In addition, the author sets forth the story in intricate details which delights reader's imaginations and brings vivid color to the sights and smells of the era.
When Vivienne finds herself as a sudden guardian of a young boy, mystery surrounds the lad who could possibly be Louis-Charles, the heir to the French throne. Readers will get a glimpse into this boy's life and his story as he and Vivienne must once again flee their home to protect their very lives. Finding refuge in a place called French Azilum, a historically accurate place in Pennsylvania, they find their lives even more intertwined with Liam Delaney and other important characters.
Vivienne, who never knew the love of her own mother, finds herself shepherding this young boy through life, providing for him, caring for him and nurturing him as she struggles to make her own way in life. She discovers the value of family and opens her heart to forgiveness along the way. It is her admirable determination and grit that I loved most about her.
Liam, who's noble character has readers falling in love with him from the start, makes his way through the story fighting moral battles and upholding what he believes to be right. As he quickly falls for the beautiful Vivienne, readers find a hint of romance that later becomes a beautiful love between two strong and independent people.
The end of the story wraps up with an exciting, climactic turn of events and a heartwarming ending. I don't want to give too much away in the details but suffice it to say, the ending will not disappoint. I truly believe historical fiction readers will love this book as much as I did. It is indeed a five star book, in my opinion.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jocelyn Green inspires faith and courage as the award-winning and bestselling author of numerous fiction and nonfiction books, including The Mark of the King; Wedded to War; and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she coauthored with bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman. Her books have garnered starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, and have been honored with the Christy Award, the gold medal from the Military Writers Society of America, and the Golden Scroll Award from the Advanced Writers & Speakers Association. She graduated from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, with a B.A. in English, concentration in writing. She loves Mexican food, Broadway musicals, Toblerone chocolate bars, the color red, and reading on her patio. Jocelyn lives with her husband Rob and two children in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Visit her at www.jocelyngreen.com or follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
Lastly, pick up your own copy of A Refuge Assured or borrow it from your local library.
Then, I'd love to hear YOUR thoughts on the book in the comments below!