Sunday, June 2, 2019

THE REFUGE by Ann H. Gabhart, Reviewed by Paula Shreckhise

The Refuge by Ann H. Gabhart is a stand alone novel about the Shakers in the 1850’s.
Reading a novel by Ann Gabhart is like sitting and talking to a treasured friend. I love the quiet way her words creep into my soul.

I knew next to nothing about the Shakers except that I have long admired the simple lines of their furniture. Ms. Gabhart has opened my eyes to the often strange customs of the Shakers. I learned the reasons behind some of their actions and attitudes.

The Shaker community of Harmony Hill seems quiet and orderly, but trouble can come to any place.
When Darcie Goodwin seeks refuge from cholera with her husband, Walter, she never thinks she would be there forever. She is given no choice but to stay at Harmony Hill when he tragically dies. She is obedient to the strange rules but has no real desire to stay there permanently. She prays God would direct her steps. What does God have in store for Darcie?

The characters in this book are truly living out their faith however diverse they may be.

This is a beautifully written story. Listen to the words of Silas Cox: “ Home.That’s a fine word, but I’ve been wondering lately if home maybe has more to do with the people you love than with a place.”

Ann Gabhart’s writing always calms me and causes me to ponder lots of things. To me that is a sign of a great writer. I have been a fan since I first read one of her books. 

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher on behalf of the author. I was under no obligation to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.*

Back Cover Blurb:
When Darcie and Walter Goodwin hear of a new cholera epidemic sweeping the area, they join the Shakers whose villages seem immune to the disease. It's meant to be a temporary stay, but Walter is killed in a riverboat accident. With no family and no money, Darcie has little choice but to stay with the Shakers. To complicate matters, she is expecting a baby conceived before she and her husband came to the Shaker village. Marital relationships are considered sinful in this celibate community, putting Darcie in a unique--and lonely--position. Can the arrival of widower Flynn Keller and his headstrong daughter offer Darcie the hope of happiness . . . and family?

Ann H. Gabhart returns to the enigmatic world of the Shakers in this emotional exploration of the power of love and the bond of family.

Available as paperback, digital ebook, hardcover and audiobook:
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