|The Governess of Highland Hall|
Reviewed by Marian Bay
Carrie Turansky takes her readers back to 1911, England, where we will meet some fascinating characters between the walls of Highland Hall.
Julia Foster spent twelve years in India, helping her parents with missionary work among young girls. Her father’s health declined and they had to return to England. Now it is Julia’s task to financially care for her parents. She finds a job as governess at Highland Hall—a beautiful estate with Sir William Ramsey as the new master.
Sir William is a widower with two young children. He inherited Highland Hall from his cousin who has left the estate in a very difficult financial situation. Besides the estate, his cousin also left two teenage girls in William’s care. William is intrigued by the new governess, but after his deceased wife’s betrayal he has decided not to trust women anymore.
Julia has her hands full with Sir William’s children, but soon enough she starts to care for them. The teenage girls are not happy with Julia—or with a governess in general. They think they don’t need a governess, but the oldest, Katherine, will turn 18 soon and she must be prepared for her first season in London.
Money is a big issue for William. Besides the difficult financial situation his deceased cousin left him in, he must also pay death duties for inheriting the estate. It seems to be impossible to get the money in time…unless he marries someone with big money. Then Lady Gatewood—Katherine’s aunt—takes a wealthy American young lady to Highland Hall. She hopes William and Alice will marry to solve William’s financial problems.
Julia wonders why Sir William is always brooding and one day she asks him what troubles him. He decides to take her in his confidence and tells her about the financial situation. Julia has a good idea to save some money by changing the menus. It will not be enough to pay the death duties, but it should help a bit. Julia’s wisdom will bring more changes to Highland Hall. Some servants do not understand nor like the changes, but they also do not know about the financial difficulties.
The longer Julia works at Highland Hall the more her feelings grow for Sir William. William returns those feelings, but he cannot possibly marry the governess. Obviously the wealthy American is a better choice to save Highland Hall.
What choice will William make? Will he choose for wealth or rather for love?
I really enjoyed this new book by Carrie Turansky. The characters are very enjoyable and easy to love. There are also some very interesting secondary characters in this novel, which I didn’t mention in my review, but I loved them all! This book is certainly worth the read if you love historical novels. I’m already looking forward to Carrie’s next book!