“Things happen in life we cannot understand. We can only do our best and seek God’s guidance and move forward the best we are able.”
A Stranger at Fellsworth, by Sarah E. Ladd, is book three in A Treasures of Surrey series.
Annabelle Thorley’s parents have died and with the passing of her father, rumors of his financial status cause her fiance to break off the engagement. She is left living with her brother and sister-in-law in London. Her brother keeps reminding her of the situation and has told her she must marry a man she does not want to.
One night after a party, the man she is suppose to marry treats her badly. When she gets away from him, her brother also treats her badly. When she gets to her room she decides her only option is to run away. She has an uncle she has only seen once and decides to go to him for help. She convinces her lady’s maid to run off with her.
Earlier in the day Annabelle met Owen Locke, the gamekeeper and assistant to the owner of Bancroft Park. He is staying at her brothers home to assist his employer on the trip. Annabelle asks him to help her get to Fellsworth. Owen is from Fellsworth and friends with her uncle and helps her get to him.
Annabelle’s uncle assigns her to be a junior teacher at the school he runs. Annabelle has not worked before and finds teaching a challenge. One of her students is Owen’s daughter, Hannah. Hannah does not like it at school. One day after some girls are mean to her, Hannah tries to go home. She steps in a trap and gets hurt. Everyone at the school is looking for her and Annabelle takes a trail Hannah told her about, finds her and takes her home.
This is a very heart warming story. The author does a great job of introducing the characters and providing details of the story. I was able to envision the homes and school as well as the rough terrain and woods. And I could just feel the brown silk of Owen’s late wife’s gown. Based in England in the early 1800’s, the story shows us how the different classes of people lived. The wealthy were tutored while the poor sent their children away to a school and seldom saw them, to allow them a chance to get an education and learn a trade.
Even though this is Christian Fiction, it does not stand out and is not preachy. One of the parts of the story that stands out for me is that as a young girl, Annabelle went to church with her mother. With her mother’s passing the family no longer attended church. Now Annabelle does not have peace like Owen and questions her faith.
Being book three in the series, it is also a stand alone novel. I have not read the first two and was able to totally enjoy this book. I especially like that the story was fast moving with suspense written into the story. I would not consider this a romance novel, but there is just a touch of romance in the story as well. I feel anyone who enjoys reading historical stories based in England will truly enjoy this story.
I received a copy of this book from Book Look Bloggers and I have chosen to write this honest review.
Series: A Treasures of Surrey Novel (Book 3)
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
You can read more about the author and books she has written at: http://sarahladd.com/
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