OIde Worlde Charm
The Innkeeper Of Ivy Hill by Julie Klassen is the most charming Christian historical novel and I adored it. Set in Wiltshire in 1820 the reader is indeed transported to another era with Julie Klassen’s delightful descriptions. As an English woman, it was wonderful to read a novel set in England. I found it easy to picture the Bell Inn, farm and village – a little like a Constable painting in my head.
The village community was perfectly captured. I ‘walked’ through the novel, alongside the characters. It was a quintessential English village, with all the various characters one finds in there.
The inn is at the heart of the village. If that dies, the infrastructure around will crumble and the community perish. Old enmity must be put aside as people work together to revive the flagging inn.
The novel has the theme of education and taking care of the widows and orphans. “Every child… should be educated, regardless of family or financial circumstances.” This is very forward thinking for 1820 as compulsory education did not come into force until the 1870’s.
Life is not so much about what we can get out, as to what we can put in. Wealth should never be the focus. We should use the talents God has given us. “Discover that work worth doing is about more than profits and toil. It’s about using the gifts and ability you have been given.”
We all make snap judgments and have our prejudices. The novel shows that we need to put these aside and treat people fairly or we may act in ways we regret. “Shame and guilt washed over her suspicions and humiliating accusations.”
The novel was reminiscent of Pride And Prejudice at times. I was reminded of Mr Darcy’s first proposal to Elizabeth Bennett where he loved her inspite of her odious mother and lowly connections!
The Innkeeper Of Ivy Hill is a novel of a bygone era. It is charming. It is welcoming and it will sink into your soul as you read.
A wonderful escape from modern life.
I received this book for free. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.