"It was not for her to criticize the ways of Almighty God; if He liked to go to all that trouble over the snowflakes, millions and millions of them, their intricate patterns too small to be seen by human eyes, and melting as soon as made, that was His affair and not hers. All she could do about it was to catch in her window, and save from entire waste, as much of the squandered beauty as she could." -Elizabeth Goudge, The Rosemary Tree In the raw aftermath of World War II, this is the story of the Wentworth family. It is the story of John Wentworth-vicar of a church in Devon, England-and his wife Daphne, who feels trapped in the vicarage. While John's great aunt lives in the dilapidated family manor house, their three daughters attend a dysfunctional school, captive among embattled staff and their headmistress. It is only Harriet, John's aging former nanny, who holds the family together through her love and empathy. But when Michael Stone returns to town, recently released from prison and now searching for his former love, Daphne, he is a disruption to the lives of all-including his own-helping to free them from their prisons, both physical and metaphorical.
Elizabeth Goudge (1900-1984) was a British novelist born into the home of an Anglican priest and theologian. She wrote children's books as well as novels-her Green Dolphin Street was made into a 1947 Academy-Award winning film. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, she won the Carnegie Award in 1947 for The Little White Horse, which is J. K. Rowling's favorite children's book.