The Elusive Miss Ellison
by Carolyn Miller
Trade Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Kregel Publications
Released: Feb. 28, 2017
Source: Review copy from the publisher.
Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
Pride, prejudice, and forgiveness... Hampton Hall's new owner has the villagers of St. Hampton Heath all aflutter--all except Lavinia Ellison. The reverend's daughter cares for those who are poor and sick, and the seventh Earl of Hawkesbury definitely does not meet that criteria. His refusal to take his responsibilities seriously leaves her convinced he is as arrogant and reckless as his brother, who killed Lavinia's mother in an accident.
Nicholas Stamford is shadowed by guilt: his own, his brother's, the legacy of war. A perfunctory visit to this dreary part of Gloucestershire wasn't supposed to engage his heart, or his mind. Challenged by Miss Ellison's fascinating blend of Bluestocking opinions, hoydenish behavior, and angelic voice, he finds the impossible becoming possible--he begins to care. But Lavinia's aloof manner, society's opposition and his ancestral obligations prove most frustrating. Can Lavinia and Nicholas look beyond painful pasts and present pride to see their future?
The Elusive Miss Ellison is a Christian romance set in 1813 in England. After experiencing war, Nicholas has decided that caring brings too much pain, so he hides behind rudeness and pride. He's also burdened by guilt for things in his past. Lavinia has been raised to look down on those who neglect the poor, so she frequently scolds Nicholas for his pride and lack of interest in his poor tenants. She soon realizes that her behavior is also rooted in pride, so she attempts to remind Nicholas of God's love instead of pointing out Nicholas' failures.
Nicholas and Lavinia quickly became likable characters who had some depth and complexity. They generally mean well even though they sometimes behaved poorly, and they helped each other to see the pride and prejudice they had in their hearts. They were better people for having met each other.
The historical details acted as a backdrop to the story, though the social expectations of the time played a vital role. Nicholas was expected to marry a rich woman from the higher classes, and Lavinia's father is too poor for her to be acceptable.
There was no bad language or sex. Overall, I'd recommend this enjoyable story.
If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.
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