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The refuge
2019
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Summary
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.

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Booklist Review
Walter and Darcie Godwin join the Shaker village of Harmony Hill (based on Kentucky's Pleasant Hill Shaker Community) to avoid the cholera epidemic, but three short months later, Walter is dead after a steamboat explosion, and Darcie is expecting his child. Flynn Keller lost his wife two years ago after a fall from a horse and is now struggling to raise his strong-willed young daughter, Leatrice, with the help of his recently widowed father-in-law, Silas. When Silas remarries, Flynn brings Leatrice to the Shaker village for schooling while he builds a house of their own. There, Leatrice assists Darcie in caring for her daughter and an abandoned baby. Although grateful for a place to live, Darcie has not embraced the Shaker ways and still longs for a family. Could Flynn and Leatrice be the answer to her prayers? Readers will be fascinated by Gabhart's knowledge of Shaker culture in this gentle romance, the eighth in her Shaker Books series, which can also be recommended to fans of Beverly Lewis' Amish novels looking for something new.--C. L. Quillen Copyright 2019 Booklist
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