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Bethany House The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1

Book one of The Gresham Chronicles takes you to an 1860s English village, where you'll meet recently bereaved Julia Hollis. Left with only her husband's debts and the memory of the fortune she once had, Julia must find a way to provide for her children. The only material thing she has left is The Larkspur, an abandoned coaching inn in the quaint village of Gresham. Used to being waited on, serving others comes as quite a shock and hardship for Julia, but with the help of the town's new vicar, it just might happen. But will a behind-the-scenes scheme jeopardize everything? Lawana Blackwell, paperback, 432 pages.
Average Customer Rating:
4.917 out of 5
4.9
 out of 
5
(24 Reviews) 24
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Rating Snapshot (24 reviews)
5 stars
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19 out of 19100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Review 1 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A great, heart-warming read!

Date:April 5, 2013
Customer Avatar
Noelle
Location:Asia
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Picture a simple English village with a refreshing blend of characters from every walk of life. Blackwell draws us in to a heart-warming place called Gresham. Beginning with the widow Julia and her children, the author continues to add real people with real struggles who eventually discover answers in God Himself. Well written with great character development. A must read, and only the beginning of the rest of the story. Read on in the remaining three books to complete the series!
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Review 2 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Delightful characters and fun read

Date:March 26, 2013
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Reader Mouse
Location:Frederick, MD
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
The characters were fun to get to know. God works in unexpected ways and when we constantly look for it rather than just walking forward with God we can miss out. Very enjoyable book.
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Review 3 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent language. Lovely story.

Date:March 18, 2013
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Viktoria
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I enjoyed reading the language used! The caracters were presented in a way that made me befriend them, like I lived among them in that little village.
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Review 4 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Well written

Date:January 30, 2013
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Maggie
Location:Ma
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mrs Blackwell did a terrific job with this book. She pulls you into the story and it's hard to put the book down. Makes you wish you could go to Gresham and visit the people.
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Review 5 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 8, 2013
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Patty
Location:Lucerne, CA
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I love this book! Lawana Blackwell is a gifted writer. I was drawn into another period of time and captivated by the storyline. I couldn't put the book down! Considering it was an ebook I purchased for my smartphone, I read both day and night! Very, very good book! There's romance, excitement, and good wholesome reading. What more could you ask for?
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Review 6 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Highly Recommend

Date:February 14, 2013
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Blessed in Texas
Location:Texas
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I would highly recommend this book. Enjoyed reading. This is an exceptional Christian fiction book. Would give more stars if allowed! Don't miss this one.
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Review 7 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Widow of Larkspur Inn

Date:February 11, 2013
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Raffie
Location:Niagara Falls, ON
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
If found the book captivated my interest right from the start.
It commenced in the middle of a situation which always brings intrigue as your mind seeks to find out what took place. With the changes that were necessary her life and the struggles that we all come to in life this book held my attention right to the end. I couldn't put it down.
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Review 8 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

I couldn't put it down!

Date:December 27, 2012
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Kupuanani
Location:Cocoa, FL
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It has been a long while since I have read a book this delightful. The beginning of the book was a little murky with details, but it was needy to get to the heart of the story. I loved the characters in this book. When I finished, I immediately went online to buy the remaining four books in this series. I can't wait to find out more about the lives of those in this series. The most wonderous part is how well it deals in leading someone to Christ. Not being pushy in anyway, but allowing the characters (mainly the Vicar) to gently guide someone who wanted nothing to do with coming to the Lord. Well done & well written all around. Even the characters of the children held your interest as they come and go in and out of the main story.
Wonderful!!!
+2points
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Review 9 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great Read!

Date:December 18, 2012
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Rebeca
Location:tx
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Loved the book, I too have lost someone and it's good to read books that give you hope Thakyou
+1point
1of 1voted this as helpful.
Review 10 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:December 18, 2012
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Sara G
Location:Ontario, Canada
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I enjoyed the historical setting of this novel & how God worked in their circumstances to bring good out of evil.
+1point
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Review 11 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fantastic!

Date:December 12, 2012
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Annie
Location:NSW
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This was not what I expected but it was a very entertaining read. It contains lots of encouragement that God can provide & strengthen us in dark times as well as good. Though our paths may not look like we may have planned, He is still in control working His best plan for our lives.
+1point
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Review 12 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 6, 2012
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Miss pat
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This was a great story with interesting characters. I really enjoyed it. Can't wait to read the rest of the series.
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Review 13 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Lovely

Date:October 24, 2012
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Erika Neary
Location:New Jersey
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I loved the book. Got it as a free e-book and loved it so much that I purchased the next book in the series and looking to get the third as well. Great characters that you want to really get to know.
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Review 14 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:October 12, 2012
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Jerrik Haman
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
This was the first book I downloaded onto my Nook-took me a bit to figure it out (problems with the computer not CBD), and now I love having this option. It was a great book, as well!
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Review 15 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Unexpectedly Wonderful

Date:October 10, 2012
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Jenn
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I went into reading this book not really expecting to like it, but oh, was I surprised! The author was new for me, and I really enjoyed her style of writing. ALL the characters grabbed my attention and the story behind each one captured my heart. Loved this book! Highly recommend.
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Review 16 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

I love historical novels written in the 1800's

Date:October 5, 2012
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libertybelle
Location:Tulare, CA
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Just when Julia feels she has come to the end of her rope, God intervenes. Her focus is not about blaming her circumstances, but she pulls herself up "by the bootstraps" and makes lemonade out of the lemons life has given her. Loved her courage in starting all over again and with God's help she overcomes the obstacles. A Great read!
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Review 17 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 1, 2012
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Jane
Location:Iowa
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It made me laugh at times and kept me in suspense at other times. One of the main reasons I am giving this story 5 stars is that it was so clean, compared to some other books that I have read.
It was lovely to see how the various characters grew in the faith in the Lord.
To see a soft woman of London roll up her sleeves, make the most of her circumstances, and leaving the results up to God was convicting.
I would recommend this to all ages...And I can't wait to get my hands on the next one in the series.
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Review 18 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent, couldn't put it down.

Date:July 13, 2012
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Momma D
Location:Ashdown, AR
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This is one the best books that I have read in a long time. The author keeps it suspenseful and exciting at the same time. There is never a dull moment. You have to read it!
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Review 19 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

•°o•:*¨¨*:•. THESE PEOPLE BECAME FAMILY .•:*¨¨*:•

Date:June 25, 2012
Customer Avatar
Heather Guerrero, Homeschool Mom to 2Blessings
Location:CORONA, CA
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
ALL FOUR BOOKS IN THIS SERIES ARE REVIEWED HERE FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE
THE WIDOW OF LARKSPUR INN, The Gresham Chronicles Book #1
Lawana Blackwell
•°o•:*¨¨*:•. THESE PEOPLE BECAME FAMILY .•:*¨¨*:• o°•
Book one of The Gresham Chronicles is set in England/1860s. Julia Hollis has 3 children, servants and a grand home, and everything she needs until her husband suddenly passes away. She finds herself very suddenly deep in debt. She has days before the bank will throw her out and take everything. The only thing they allow her to keep is an old coaching inn in a village she has never heard of.
Initially, this book was hard for me because it focused on Julia’s husband having a secret life of gambling. A life of sin he chose over his family. However, as the story progressed, I was able to relate to so much of what Julia was going through and the growth in Christ that she experienced. God used this book to grow me as well, and minister to my heart to continue to trust Him to see me and my kids through.
There are SO MANY WONDERFUL characters. You get to meet them and become a part of this village life and wish you were there. I am now about to start my 4th book in the series. I know I will be sad when it ends.
I so appreciate how this book is written with faith and God well-written throughout. It is very much the way I live life everyday. God is a part of my everyday life and a natural subject of conversation. But this book doesn’t feel preachy, above-your-head. Just simple and flowing like a gentle river of God’s love. One thing I love, is how the books switch back and forth from different characters perspective. You really get inside each one’s head. It feels like you are watching a miniseries! Each time I read from the books, I feel better and uplifted like I have been around good friends at church. I highly recommend these books.
Book1 - 432 pages
Also, please view her website. It is under her full name and very sweet. www.LawanaBlackwell.com
The Courtship of the Vicar's Daughter, Gresham Chronicles Series #2
•°o•:*¨¨*:•. LAUGH OUT LOUD, CRY, GENUINELY ENJOY .•:*¨¨*:• o°•
Book TWO of The Gresham Chronicles continues in the lovely and now cherished village of Gresham. The details of these books are so rich. The fact that The Larkspur Inn is a boarding house allows for characters to move in and out and change so we can easily expect new ones to grace us with their presence. I love that there are several elderly characters, not just one or two and the author does not shy away from giving detailed descriptions of their emotions and lives. In this second book, you also get to know some of the children better, such as when young Philip goes off to boarding school. I absolutely love Mrs. Kingston. She is so cheeky. I laugh at her antics and enjoyed her thoroughly. Seth and Mercy are my favorite in this book. The way the Lord worked in their lives was amazing, and I found myself really rooting for them. However, the writer takes her time and does not rush the situation so you really get to go on a nice ride as their characters develop in an unexpected way.
The author also makes reference to books or authors that her characters are reading, such as Little Women, An Old Fashioned Girl, Jane Austen, etc. It is fun to see books/authors listed that I recognize.
I highly recommend these books.
Book2 - 416 pages
The Dowry of Miss Lydia Clark, Gresham Chronicles Series #3
•°o•:*¨¨*:•. I WANT TO MOVE HERE! .•:*¨¨*:• o°•
Book THREE of The Gresham Chronicles delivers you right back where you want to be. My only regret is that where Mercy and Seth had such a major role in book two, but they have only minor parts in this book. However, there are plenty of new relationships to follow. Mercy’s brother Harold, actually grows into a very pleasant character in this book. Ooooh, those Sanders men were hard to like in Book two! There is love, faith, jealousy, introspection, the growing pains of youth and more in all of these books. There is also a great deal of humor that is injected at the most unusual moments so that you are caught of guard laughing out loud (and wondering if anyone else heard you!). In fact, Lydia’s dad really reminds me of my own dad who has dry humor that is all to happy to share with strangers and causes Lydia to role her eyes, and sarcastically commented that she’s adopted. Ha ha! Once again, I felt warm and happy and wanting to live in Gresham, surrounded by the love of good friends, and God’s love and simple times. I generally finish these books in a few days to week, allowing one full day off just to devote to reading. I did not plan it that way, but each one was so good, that’s just what happened. I could not put them down!!!
I am so looking forward to reading book #4
Book3 - 398 pages
The Jewel of Gresham Green, Gresham Chronicles Series #4
•°o•:*¨¨*:•.NOT AS GOOD AS THE FIRST THREE .•:*¨¨*:• o°•
Book FOUR of The Gresham Chronicles picks up in April 1884, 15 years after book three ends. It is very sad and depressing in many instances. Several of the old characters are gone, but some are still around. The sad times seem to outweigh the good times so I just did not enjoy this book as much. When it ended, I was finally ok with that, which is really a bummer after love, love, loving the first three.
Book4 - 415 pages
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Review 20 for The Widow of Larkspur Inn, The Gresham Chronicles #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 25, 2008
Customer Avatar
Stephanie
Before I read this one again, I had not been to Gresham in many years--in fact, since high school. Thus, my copy of "Larkspur Inn" had ended up in my basement, but it was so good to visit Gresham again, because I remembered everything I loved. Julia's strength, faith journey, relationship with her children, and tender romance, as well as her mentorship of Elizabeth, are all wonderful character and plot points. Julia's children are sweet, but delightfully human, and I especially loved the passages written from Philip's POV. The subplot of Fiona and Ambrose's romance is both intriguing and sweet, and I rooted for Ambrose all the way, in part because, as a sufferer of mild depression, I could identify with him somewhat. But I think my favorite part of coming back to Gresham was seeing all these lovely people again and catching up on the news. After I finished this book, I was eager to dig up the others, put on an imaginary Victorian dress, and go visiting again!
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