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A Refuge Assured

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Vivienne Rivard fled revolutionary France and seeks a new life for herself and a boy in her care, who some say is the Dauphin. But America is far from safe, as militiaman Liam Delaney knows. He proudly served in the American Revolution but is less sure of his role in the Whiskey Rebellion. Drawn together, will Liam and Vivienne find the peace they long for?

413 pages, Paperback

First published February 1, 2018

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Jocelyn Green

31 books1,320 followers

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205 (12%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 386 reviews
Profile Image for Jocelyn Green.
Author 31 books1,320 followers
September 12, 2017
And when I say I have "read" this book... I can't even tell you how many times I've read it. About eighty-five (it feels like), making lots of changes every time. Just one more pass through the galleys though, and then it's out of my hands!
Profile Image for Deanne Patterson.
1,908 reviews76 followers
February 12, 2018
Based on Jocelyn Green writing my favorite Civil War series I knew I was in for a treat reading this and believe me it did not disappoint. The author writes novels steeped in historical detail so well you will believe you are there with the characters experiencing it, from the descriptions to the sights,sounds,smells and even the characters thoughts.
The book starts out in late 1700s Paris, France and gives readers a feel of the French Revolution and sets us up with the main character's background from lace making to the story of her mother.
I was especially fascinated to read how the majority of the story took place in my home state of Pennsylvania,it took place in Philadelphia to be exact. I even found out the Pittsburgh Post Gazette newspaper used to be called the Pittsburgh Gazette when it first started out. It's so fascinating the historical facts you can find out with some research and I appreciate the author doing just this.
This book held my attention firmly gripped and it won't be soon forgotten.
I enjoyed this book immensely and look forward to her next book.
I received a review copy from the author and was not required to write a positive review.

Profile Image for Beth.
783 reviews318 followers
March 17, 2018
A Refuge Assured is hands down one of my favorite reads of the year so far. I loved every element of this story. The characters are endearing and distinct, the plot moves at a perfect pace, and the historical details just make everything come to life.

Vivienne has already been through so much heartache when she arrives in Philadelphia from Paris. I loved getting a glimpse of her life in Paris, as it really set the stage for what was to come, as well as helping the reader to understand what Vivienne and many other French citizens lost as consequence of the French Revolution. Already in the opening scenes Vivienne's emotion as well as moments of suspense leap off of the page. The making of beautiful and delicate lace, what had once been a livelihood for Vivienne became a mark against her, so much so that she had no choice but the flee to what she believes is a safe haven in America. Of course, tensions still run high there, with Royalist plots, as well as the infamous Whiskey Rebellion, about which I knew very little.

Wonderful secondary characters abound, and, of course, some scoundrels, too. Liam Delaney is one of the more realistic male leads that I've read about in a while. Green isn't afraid to have her characters make mistakes and get messy as they navigate tricky and dangerous situations. All the while, though, Liam maintains his honor and tries to do what is right. I also appreciate a slow burning romance, one that takes work and time, one that makes you cheer when things are going their way.

A Refuge Assured is definitely my favorite book by Jocelyn Green that I've read so far, and I'm so glad that her next novel is already in the works. With a well-rounded plot and wonderfully engaging characters, A Refuge Assured will please fans of realistic historical fiction.
Profile Image for Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls).
1,647 reviews3,644 followers
October 3, 2022
About this book:

“Lacemaker Vivienne Rivard never imagined her craft could threaten her life. Yet in revolutionary France, it is a death sentence when the nobility, and those associated with them, are forced to the guillotine. Vivienne flees to Philadelphia but finds the same dangers lurking in the French Quarter, as revolutionary sympathizers threaten the life of a young boy left in her care, who some suspect to be the Dauphin. Can the French settlement, Azilum, offer permanent refuge?
Militiaman Liam Delaney proudly served in the American Revolution, but now that the new government has imposed an oppressive tax that impacts his family, he barely recognizes the democracy he fought for. He wants only to cultivate the land of his hard-won farm near Azilum, but soon finds himself drawn into the escalating tension of the Whiskey Rebellion. When he meets a beautiful young Frenchwoman recently arrived from Paris, they will be drawn together in surprising ways to fight for the peace and safety for which they long.”

Series: As of now, no.

Spiritual Content- Psalm 142:5 at the beginning; Scriptures are quoted & remembered; Prayers; Talks about God; ‘H’s are capital when referring to God; Mentions of God; Mentions of prayers, praying, & blessings over food; Mentions of churches, church going, services, & priests; Mentions of Christmas; Mentions of Providence; Mentions of Quakers; Mentions of sins; Mentions of Paulette not believing in God or an afterlife, but she later wonders about forgiveness; A few mentions of those in the Bible; A few mentions of thanking God; A few mentions of faiths; A few mentions of Heaven; A mention of the birth of Christ; A mention of Godspeed; A mention of a miracle; A mention of crossing oneself;
*Note: A couple mentions of ghosts; A mention of being ‘damned’; A mention of a talisman; A mention of a hex.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: an ‘idiot’, a ‘stupid’, two ‘shut up’s, three ‘hang it all’s, and six forms of ‘blast’; Mentions of curses (said, not written, including one by Liam and one by Paulette); Trying to kill a child four times (semi-detailed, not successful); A fire, smoke, & explosion (semi-detailed); Being shot (x2), hit, blood/bleeding, & passing out (semi-detailed); Being nearly strangled & injuries (up to semi-detailed); Being attacked/thrown glass and manure at (up to semi-detailed); Being pushes in a busy street & nearly ran-over (up to semi-detailed); Injuries, Pain, Blood/Bleeding, & Being Tarred (barely-above-not-detailed); Stitching someone up (up to semi-detailed); Drinking wine at dinner; Smelling hard liquor & watching others drink (up to semi-detailed); A young boy is given alcohol & gets drunk (barely-above-not-detailed); Nightmares (up to semi-detailed); Set during revolutions (semi-detailed); Many, many mentions of murders, beheadings, guillotines, those soon-to-be executed, & those in favor of it (semi-detailed); Many, many mentions of wars, revolutions, rebels, violence, & deaths (up to semi-detailed); Many mentions of dead bodies, ligaments from those bodies on pikes, blood/bleeding, & horror (semi-detailed); Many mentions of pain, injuries/wounds, beatings, being shot, blood/bleeding, stitches, scars, & screams (up to semi-detailed); Many mentions of alcohol/wine, drinking, drunks, & taverns/bars; Mentions of a murder (semi-detailed); Mentions of a plan to kill a child; Mentions of people being burned alive; Mentions of fighting, hitting/slapping, gunshots/bullets, & massacres; Mentions of hangings & being hung; Mentions of tarring & feathering others (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of crimes; Mentions of illnesses, symptoms, vomit, vomiting, & deaths (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of slavery, deaths, & slaves killing their masters (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of young boys that died (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of threats & abuse (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of arrests, imprisonment, & prisons/jails; Mentions of debts; Mentions of fires & smoke; Mentions of an attempted kidnapping; Mentions of hatred, prejudice, & revenge; Mentions of nightmares; Mentions of cigars, pipes, tobacco, & smoke; Mentions of lies, lying, & liars; Mentions of gossip & rumors; A few mentions of a young girl watching her parents die; A few mentions of thieves & stealing; A few mentions of animal manure; A couple mentions of a bully & getting a black eye; A couple mentions of gambling; A couple mentions of jealousy; A couple mentions of frostbitten toes being amputated; A couple mentions of using the bathroom outside (barely-above-not-detailed); A mention of sarcasm.

Sexual Content- a hand kiss, a semi-detailed wrist kiss, a cheek kiss, a head kiss, a not-detailed kiss, a semi-detailed kiss, a forced border-line semi-detailed // detailed kiss, and detailed kisses; Touches, Dancing, Embraces, & Nearness (up to semi-detailed); Unwanted Touches & Suggestions (up to semi-detailed); Noticing & Smelling (barely-above-not-detailed); A man tries to get Vivienne to be his (she assumes) new mistress (she will not); a ‘whore’; Mentions of a fourteen year old maid being impregnated by the master of the house & forced to have an abortion (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of Vivienne being illegitimate child & her mother being a courtesan/mistress, also entertaining her lovers, and being faithful; Mentions of adultery, adulterers, & affairs; Mentions of courtesans & mistresses; Mentions of kisses & kissing (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of chaperones, virtue, & scandals; A few mentions of a young, unmarried woman being pregnant & wanting a rushed wedding; A few mentions of a man wanting to leave his wife for another woman; A couple mentions of unwanted advances; A mention of blushing & longing over the thought of having babies; Love, falling in love, & the emotions;
*Note: A few mentions of the butt of a gun; A mention of a low-cut neckline; A mention of a woman’s too small shirt; A mention of a man’s muscles (barely-above-not-detailed); A mention of kicking someone’s groin.

-Vivienne “Vienne” Rivard, age 28-29
-William “Liam” Delaney, age 38-39
P.O.V. switches between them, Paulette (9x), & Henri (6x)
Set in 1794-1795 (Prologue set in 1792, Epilogue in 1802)
413 pages

Pre Teens- One Star
New Teens- One Star
Early High School Teens- One Star
Older High School Teens- One Star
My personal Rating- One Star
I always have a “catch-22 dilemma” when have to read and rate historical book set during or around wars.
I hate the unjustness of those time periods. It honestly makes me dislike history so much and feel sick to my stomach.
But, because I do content reviews, whether historical facts or not, those parts are held up to the Philippians 4:8 standard of this blog.
And to be honest, a lot of history isn’t so lovely.
So, while, yes, historical can be awful, terrible, and horrible, I must be honest and give ratings based on how the author writes the details of those parts and how it’s handled.
See what I mean about a catch-22?
Unfortunately, “A Refuge Assured” has this case.
Agree or disagree with what I’ve said or these ratings, Books for Christian Girls has a duty to stand by our values, list out the content in every book, and give whatever ratings we feel are necessary.
For our actual final thoughts:
Being my first book by this author, the prologue had me wondering what in the world did I just get myself into. The blood, murders, and gore were too much for myself.
For Vivienne, while I sympathized with her situation and I liked her drive to handle things, there was something about her personality that I felt clashed with my own. I can’t really put into words what felt off, but there was something.
Liam, well, Liam. It felt like it was forever until we met him. In actuality, it was only 57 pages. But, that’s still quite a while for a normal length book. This one was just over 400 pages and while the romance section really didn’t happen until the last 100 pages or so, there was quite a bit in that area. The Spiritual Content was a decent amount for a book this long, but I would have preferred more discussions and such. Will I ever try out this author again, though? We’ll have to see.
Personally, I further confirmed two things while reading this book:
1.) One of my least favorite time periods is the 1700s and you couldn’t pay me to live in that time period.
and 2.) I never want to be in politics. Ever.

Link to review:

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Bethany House) for this honest review.
Profile Image for Loraine.
3,024 reviews
November 2, 2018
There were so many things that I loved about this book. First, I loved that each part was introduced by a quote that was apropos to that part. Second, the historical detail regarding the French Revolution and the French emigration to the United States was incredible, and I learned so much about a period of history that wasn't familiar to me. The differences between those in power in the US who were anti-French and those who were Francophiles. The attitudes of some people in power like Alexander Hamilton who seemed more power hungry than caring for the citizens of the new United States. The Whiskey Rebellion against the taxes imposed on the makers who were just trying to earn a living from the crop they grew. The inhumane treatment of those who were arrested for making whiskey. Green brought this time period to life on every single page of the book.

So many wonderful characters with unique and varied temperaments: Vivienne with her fortitude and loving care for Henri even though she often doubted herself because of her parentage. Liam with his strong belief in the laws and obeying them until change could be made. Soon he found out that not everything was black and white. Henri who oscillated from vibrant and fun to despondent and bedridden. Secondary characters rounded out the plot and added to the touch of mystery wondering who Henri really was.

A wonderfully written book that made it to my 2018 favorites list.
Profile Image for Staci.
1,792 reviews541 followers
February 4, 2018
A Refuge Assured is full of historical detail. The beginning of the novel is set in late 1700s Paris, France providing readers with the feel of the French Revolution and background for main character Vivienne Rivard. The majority of the novel, however, takes place in Philadelphia.

While Vivienne is the main focus, there is another compelling story line as well. To share more about that would be a spoiler.

I close the novel feeling I've visited both Paris and Philadelphia during such a tumultuous time period. Jocelyn does an excellent job of providing readers with visuals, smells and feelings for locations. My only frustration and it was minor was the use of both Vienne and Vivienne. However, I got used to the switch between the two and was not distracted by it after a couple of chapters.

Overall, this is another fabulous historical novel penned by Jocelyn Green. It is clear she puts a great deal of research into her work. This reader definitely appreciates that.

My gratitude to publisher Bethany House for a complimentary copy of the novel. I was not required to post a review and the opinions expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Sarah Grace Grzy.
629 reviews840 followers
March 8, 2018
I'm pretty sure that met all my high expectations. And exceeded them in some ways. This book was just so beautiful, and I will definitely be reading more by this talented author!

The characters. Just wow! The MCs, Vivienne and Liam, both had such depth, and were such real, relatable characters. I loved Vienne's willingness to serve others and provide for herself and others, yet it wasn't in a feministic way. And Liam . . . he was such a gentleman, and his struggles with right\wrong in regards to freedom and the Revolution . . . so good! Henri was also adorable! The first scene in his POV threw me off a bit, but I actually really liked getting into his head and hearing his perspective. The supporting cast was also fabulous.

The writing. My word! I absolutely fell in love with Green's beautiful writing style. Her descriptions were so vivid and had me feeling like I was living in the story, yet they weren't overly wordy.

The story. So so good! Initially it took me a little bit to get interested, but after a few chapters, things really started picking up and I couldn't put it down. The comparisons between the American and the French Revolutions were so fascinating and enlightening. I feel like the time period and setting this book is written in (1790s America) is not touched upon a whole lot in fiction, so it just made it all the more fascinating. I loved the amount of rich history Green throws into the story. I love learning something new while reading fiction, and Green kept the history far from dry or boring.

The romance. *happy sigh* So beautiful! This is exactly the kind of romance I love to read - slow, sweet, and beautiful.

I really don't have much to complain about with this story, but if I were to mention one thing, it would be the dialogue. It felt slightly too modern for the time period at times, but not terribly so.

All in all, I absolutely loved A Refuge Assured, it is definitely getting a place of honor on my bookshelf! Highly recommended, especially if you love beautiful historical romance.

One more note: That cover is swoon-worthy gorgeous! You definitely need to get a paperback copy if you read this book! <33

CONTENT NOTE: I would recommend this for ages 16+ for descriptions of violence and adult themes.
Profile Image for Hannah.
2,449 reviews1,337 followers
February 22, 2018
A lusciously detailed story of a young woman who escapes the French Revolution by the skin of her teeth and finds herself in many more challenges fitting into her new life in America than she had dreamed of facing. Most of the stories I have read about Revolutionary survivors have them going to England or Holland or Italy. Going to America is a nearly-new one for me...this is only the second one I’ve read. Combine Vivienne’s experiences with Liam and the Whiskey Rebellion, and there’s yet more to learn. It’s a colorful and interesting story, with a hefty dash of suspense, and is a very enjoyable read.

One thing that rather jumped out at me was that lots in Asylum were said to be a half-acre plot, but Liam’s farm is very obviously larger than that. I felt like something was missing there. Another thing that sounded funny was that a guy was surprised in the middle of the night and ran out shirtless—the average guy of the times would wear a nightshirt.

Content: some striking details of violence, a kiss that lasts an entire page, and mentions of someone being naked
Language: frequent “blast”ing
Faith content: very light; a few mentions of prayers, trusting God, and having faith
Profile Image for Maureen Timerman.
2,875 reviews475 followers
February 6, 2018
From France to Pennsylvania your life is in danger because you make lace? This is brought about because of a frenzy of people who hate the monarchy, and will go to extremes to get rid of all chances that it will return to power, killing young children, and innocents.
With a heavy heart the author has brought our lacemaker Vivienne Rivard actually running for her life, and puts in her path a young mother and child that will forever change her, and a hurt American Revolutionary, and Irishman, Liam Delaney. Soon I was googling for information about the happenings of the French Revolution and the child King.
We watch with horror as injustice seems to follow our hero across the ocean, and we cringe when those we admire through history are responsible for doing some of these same things that brought them to the War of Independence. We learn that some we trust cannot be trusted, and what they do is beyond my imagination.
A historical story that is full of information that I did not know, and once started I could not put it down. Enjoy!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Bethany House, and was not required to give a positive review.
Profile Image for Emilee.
492 reviews92 followers
October 22, 2018
Wow! What a ride! This book has a lot of political history. The author really brought it to life. The characters are all very well done. Liam is an amazing hero. This is not a fast read but it’s worth it. I love how the epilogue wrapped up the story.
Profile Image for Dawn.
781 reviews76 followers
March 23, 2018
This book was so good! I loved watching Vivienne grow from the lacemaker to the queen into the independent American woman she became. I found this period of history rather fascinating. I don't read a lot of early American (Post-Revolution), so this particular period was rather new to me. I enjoyed it.

I received a copy from Bethany House to review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Profile Image for Susie Finkbeiner.
Author 10 books775 followers
February 19, 2018
Jocelyn Green's superpower is taking a piece of history, researching every angle of it, and crafting a story set in that era so expertly that her readers feel that they've been placed right in the midst of the character's lives. Green has accomplished this in each of her novels. However, if required to pick my favorite of her books I wouldn't hesitate. It's A Refuge Assured.

With breathtakingly beautiful prose, well rounded and fully realized characters, and a plot with enough intrigue to keep the reading turning pages A Refuge Assured deserves every single accolade and glowing review.

I highly recommend this book for history buffs, homeschool families (probably for high school and up), readers of Christian fiction, and anyone who just really loves a well crafted novel.

Profile Image for Lori.
171 reviews7 followers
November 7, 2018
Excellent historical fiction! Loved the setting, characters, and especially the rich historical details!
Profile Image for Heidi Chiavaroli.
Author 14 books896 followers
May 27, 2018
A fascinating and beautifully told story about a part of history I was unfamiliar with. I loved the way Jocelyn cut out the characters' stories from the pages of history and I absolutely felt for them in their hardships. I also appreciated the author's honest exploration of freedom versus the need for order, both on an individual level and for that of one's country. So well-researched, so well done!
Profile Image for Sarah Sundin.
Author 18 books2,853 followers
July 5, 2018
A Refuge Assured shines a light on a tumultuous time in American history as the new nation tried to decide what it would stand for. Jocelyn Green spins an enthralling story built on impeccable research, with fascinating characters. Historical fiction at its finest!
Profile Image for Victoria Lynn.
Author 9 books713 followers
April 4, 2018

My rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.

My Review:
Wow. This book was intense! It took me a bit to read as I had a lot of things going on and this book was long by today’s standards for sure.

Before I even get to the actual story itself though, THE COVER. It is probably one of the most beautiful covers I have seen in a long time. It is matte and gorgeous and even more beautiful than it’s online image when you have it in person. And then there’s the interior formatting. The lace decorating even the inside made this tale of a lace maker all the more interesting.
Okay, back to the story. I was incredibly impressed. The story follows Vivienne Rivard from the streets of Paris where she is a lace maker, all the way to America, and across the years as she makes her home in the new country. The attention to details in this story were fantastic. You are never at a lack for information and they are so vivid, I could always see the scene and the surroundings with ease. Miss Green does a phenomenal job filling the book with these details, without losing the readers interest one bit. It doesn’t become bogged down or boring, simply more interesting. The writing style was reminiscent of an older style of book, and it worked so well with the time period.

The characters. They were deep, complex, flawed and broken, yet full of beauty. Each one had a story to tell and I enjoyed finding more about each one as time went on. Motives, means, relationships and friendships were woven together and sometimes tangled to the point of confusion for the characters themselves, but great interest to the readers. As a reader, I could find myself relating to numerous characters, hating others, and rooting for the heroes and heroines. When a book elicits such strong feeling over the story, I know it’s a good one.

The story and plot itself was so intriguing. From all of the historical details (of which I was fascinated) and the actual fictional story woven throughout, it was an incredible feat. Enough mystery and suspense are combined with everyday moments and affairs to keep you turning pages until the very end. The time period itself was a very interesting choice and not one I have read much on. It felt very much like Les Miserables mixed with the Scarlet Pimpernel at times and I was so in love with it. The French Revolution, the aftermath of the American Revolution, the Whiskey Rebellion, the French Asylum and so many more historical facts and events were told so grippingly. I learned so much about that time period.

There was quite a bit of mystery surrounding the young Dauphin of France as well that kept me on my toes.

If you love historical fiction in the least, you will find this story a must read! And if you enjoy books like the Scarlett Pimpernel or Les Miserables, you will definitely like this book.

Content Advisory:
Profile Image for Lydia Howe.
Author 4 books74 followers
May 29, 2018
Why I Choose This Book:

A few years ago I got pulled into the beauty of Miss Jocelyn's fantastically built historical settings and I've felt the same draw ever since. The stories aren't always my favorite, but the way she makes history come alive? I've been blown away by her writing time and time again.

What I Thought:

When I was twelve or so I read a book that took place during the French Revolution and was completely horrified. Like, crying for days and being unlike myself for a couple of months. Looking back it's no wonder - I had no clue as a preteen that the Regine of Terror had existed, and there was no need for me to at that young age. But, because of that horrible experience I've avoided any and everything from that time period, except what I had to learn for school. And then this book came along. I didn't exactly pay attention to what it was about when I requested it for review, because come on, it's written by Jocelyn Green.

This story, folks. This story had the exactly perfect balance between letting us know what happened during the French Revolution, and not going into too much detail. You can feel the sorrow, feel the frightened confusion, feel the horribleness of it all, and yet in a balanced, vague way that won't leave you in a depressed funk for days.

In the space of about two weeks, I (totally unplanned) read three books that took place during this time period, and this book was by far my favorite. Miss Jocelyn makes history come alive in her stories and makes me feel like I'm there, watching from the sidelines. She also has this fantastic habit of picking settings/facts/people that aren't exceedingly well known, and therefore I've had so much fun researching what was true and what wasn't when I'm done reading the book, and I'm always surprised by how much of the setting/little details are true.

As for the story and characters themselves? Well, they aren't generally my favorite for some reason; I think it's just because I don't really connect with them. That sadly takes my rating down, but I think a lot of other people would enjoy them far more than me and have a much higher rating.


This book isn't one for little children - I would say probably sixteen would be the youngest I'd give this story to. The book talks about mistresses (but in a clean, vague way) and of course all the stuff that went on during the French Revolution.

*I'm thankful to the publishers who sweetly gave me this book so I could review it
Profile Image for Maddy.
114 reviews99 followers
April 24, 2018
What a delightful read this was! This is a beautiful historical book and one I definitely recommend reading.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. The characters, setting, and the plot all fit so well together. I absolutely loved this authors writing style and the way she describes everything. This is definitely a new favorite for me.

I have to say that one of my favorite parts of this book is the plot. It was so delightful! With the French people, war, lacemakers, noble heirs, I was drawn into this book. New things kept coming left and right and it was all so intriguing. While I loved the beginning with being in Europe, I did find the book to be a little slow at the start. ( The reason for the star off ) It’s a big book though and I really enjoyed it once things started to take off.

This is an amazing historical book and I definitely recommend that everyone get a copy!

*I received a free copy in exchange of my honest review. All thoughts are my own and I wasn’t required to write a positive review*
Profile Image for Katie.
476 reviews
January 4, 2018
I have been eagerly looking forward to reading this book. The combination of the French Revolution with the struggles of the early American government captured my attention and A Refuge Assured delivers and exceeds my expectations.
The book is filled with historical detail, but it's never overwhelming. The plot is quick paced and interesting, and the characters will linger after the last page is closed.
I enjoyed every word of this book and eagerly await her next one!

I was provided a copy of this book. All opinions and my review are my own.
Profile Image for Ruth.
581 reviews39 followers
July 29, 2018
Jocelyn Green's A Refuge Assured is an exquisite blend of colonial history, wherein the birth pangs of a newly established United States intersect with the bloody reach of the French Revolution. Here Green invites readers to question rightness of revolution and the tension between the rule of law and oppression, and to consider anew the cost of conflict when innocents on either side of a conflict are caught in the crossfire.

Lacemaker Vivienne Rivard flees Paris and its painful memories of revolution and dashed familial hope only to find the very ideals she fled espoused from street corners and positions of power in America. When a young child, a fellow refugee, falls into her care, Vivienne heads west, desperately seeking a refuge for her young charge as well as her battered heart. Once in Asylum, the French settlement, her life becomes entwined with Liam Delaney, an Irish militiaman who fought in the revolution and in its aftermath finds himself struggling to recognize the ideals for which he fought in the new country struggling to establish itself. Green deftly weaves together French and American 18th century history, shedding light on a little-known slice of history (to me, at any rate) where French refugees sought to establish Azilum - asylum - from the Terror in Pennsylvania.

This is such a richly textured, thought-provoking novel, delving into the political realities of the time in both the newly established American and abroad. Woven throughout the tension of the period is a deftly-handled thread of faith and redemption, and what it means to belong in a family, a place, and to a calling. And the romance! The slow-burning romance Green develops between Vivienne and Liam is absolutely exquisite, heart-stopping, swoon-worthy! Green's characters are beautifully wrought, and her sense of time and place exquisitely realized. I cannot believe it has taken me this long to discover her writing! A Refuge Assured is a new favorite, and I look forward to discovering Green's backlist. Her gorgeous prose, unforgettable characterizations, and heart-tugging themes mark her as a voice to watch.
Profile Image for Gretchen.
263 reviews36 followers
November 22, 2020
This outstanding book has turned me into emotional mush in the best of ways. This is definitely one of my favorite reads this year. I was completely invested from page one & felt every emotion with the vibrant cast of well rounded characters. First of all: Liam Delaney. What a MAN!!😍 I love reading about a hero that is just a genuinely GOOD guy (& if he wears a tricorn hat, all the better). He fought in the American revolution, stands up for what he believes in, & has the rescuing-the-damsel-in-distress-just-in-time thing down. As a reader you get the rewarding joy of watching the two main characters slowly fall for each other. The romance builds as the story goes on & you are sure to not be disappointed! I’m a reader that likes heavy romance but I was completely enthralled with this book even before the romance was really picking up. & once it builds up...wowza😍 that first kiss was everything!

The story was so incredibly well written & interesting. The French Revolution colliding with post revolution America was fascinating. This book truly has it all: mystery/intrigue, romance, historical interest. I was on the edge of my seat many times throughout the book & did not want to put it down (& to be honest that’s a rarity for me these days).

It was easy to feel every emotion with Vivienne as she escaped France & embraced becoming a mother over night. I loved watching her grow as a mother to Henri.💕 I was so immersed & moved by the story that I shed tears more than once while reading. Which like never happens.

This is definitely on my list of favorite books this year & I would say it’s my favorite Jocelyn Green book I’ve read (although I did really love Yankee in Atlanta!) I would loveeee for her to write more books with an 18th century setting. 😄 Her writing ranks up there with the likes of Laura Frantz & Lori Benton!
Author 3 books40 followers
March 14, 2018
4 Stars

This was really good! Not a time period I read about a lot, but really good! I was reallye excited to read it, since its my first book from Bethany House Blogger Review program.


the characters

I really liked how Ms. Green had most of the main characters' perpectives throughout the book. Each of the characters had well-developed personalities. Henri was so sweet!

the romance

The romance in A Refuge Assured wasn't necessarily everywhere, which I liked. There were touches of romance throughout, but it wasn't just a romance.

the time period

Like I mentioned, I don't read a lot during this time period. I've studied some on the French Revolution, but not a lot. I've barely read anything about the Whiskey Rebellion. This was really interesting, especially in that it followed a lacemaker's life. It's amazing to think that people were killed just for making lace for nobility. Also, seeing a vetran from the American Revolution's perpective on early America was interesting.


too much going on

A Refuge Assured was soo good, but I felt like occasionally there was too much going on. You had a French woman fleeing the French Revolution (plus the Jacobin/Henri's subplot thing), and a man sorta kinda for the Whiskey Rebellion (but his cousin, who's like his brother, is completely for it). Just too much at times.

~personal thoughts~

All in all, I really enjoyed A Refuge Assured, and I'm considering reading other books by Ms. Green!

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Denise Weimer.
Author 27 books203 followers
June 7, 2020
As an author and historical imprints editor myself, I'm a huge fan of Colonial frontier romance, but this was my first Jocelyn Green book. It won't be my last. In every crevice of downtime, I looked forward to immersing myself into this sensory-rich journey into the French Revolution and 1790s Pennsylvania. This sweeping tale is not for those who want to hurry through, but for the lingerers, those who reread carefully wrought phrases, who can almost smell and taste another era, who close their eyes and imagine ...
Profile Image for Gina.
189 reviews1 follower
July 19, 2021
This was my first Jocelyn Green book and it was really good! It surpassed my expectations! At first I loved it, then it lulled a little for me but then it picked up and I was completely into it. It was romantic and the plot was really exciting! I loved the twist that was thrown in there. It's always so fun to be reading and have the book take a turn you were not expecting.
Profile Image for Susan.
568 reviews57 followers
January 23, 2018
Hauntingly beautiful! Jocelyn Green delivers another riveting story with the skill of a master craftsman. She masterfully weaves the story of refugees from the French Revolution seeking asylum in Pennsylvania, as our young country struggles in its' infancy with such controversial events as the Whiskey Rebellion.
While there is much historical detail, it never overshadowed the story. The author artistically pens images of early American life with words that appeals to all of the senses. I found her characters to be endearing, in spite of their many flaws.
This is a story filled with heart-breaking loss and triumph that rises above tragedy. It is a story of relationships and loyalties. It is a story of finding one's moral compass. It is a story of forgiveness. But most importantly, it is a story of finding home, family, a refuge....and knowing all along one can always find refuge and strength in God.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author/publisher. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Profile Image for Bhriv.
604 reviews24 followers
January 4, 2018
A Refuge Assured, written by Jocelyn Green, is another lovely read by this author. From the lace being made in France to the lace being made in a small refuge in Pensylvania, we are taken on a journey of words at the ends of our fingertips as each page turns to see, hear, and experience the trauma of the French Revolution that didn't cease when these French escaped to America. We also felt the deep relationships that were built, crushed, wished for, and sometimes saw them successful in not just passion of country but of heart. From innocent children to grown adulterous men, we saw God's protection and plan worked out each step of the way.
My favorite characters were Vivienne as she is the epitome of a strong courageous woman. And Liam...yep, just have to love him! He was a school teacher, turned militiaman, turned farmsteader... willing to help grow minds, grow crops, and of course, defend those who needed it most. He gave up so much and still was willing to give more. The exact man I'd want for my daughters! <3
This is a heavy historical read with just the right amount of romance. It's not a light read. It is lovely in all aspects. It is truly inspirational in that God never gives up on people. Just like thread is on a bobbin waiting to be used for the queen's lace, so are we to be turned into what He wants us to become because of His great love for us.
I was given an ARC by the publisher. All thoughts and comments are my own.
Profile Image for Heather Gilbert.
Author 37 books754 followers
February 10, 2018
It's no coincidence this richly-detailed historical novel has mostly (if not all) five star reviews. As I read, I sat in wonder at how the author so deftly wove in elements of suspense, faith, and romance. I learned so much about the French Revolution and the Whiskey Rebellion with this novel, and it gave me a fresh view of characters like Alexander Hamilton. I liked the plucky main character Vivienne (something about her was so very French!) and I appreciated Liam Delaney's drive to have land of his own. Side characters were as well-developed as the main characters in this novel. This is a must-read for fans of Christian historical fiction!
Profile Image for writer....
1,286 reviews74 followers
July 20, 2018
Excellent historical novel of French Revolution and the aftermath for those such as Vivienne who were in trade for the benefit of the aristocrats. Unique insights and outcomes both of their lives in France and the transition to arrival in America. All is not smooth sailing!

#BIGBookSummer 2018 #ParisinJuly2018 #alphabethon "R"
Profile Image for Rachael.
656 reviews
February 6, 2018
This book was truly phenomenal, heart wrenching, and so well done! I tried to read this one slowly...to absorb everything that was written on the pages. Such a terrific story with loveable characters, an unusual setting, and ( my favorite part) a lot of obscure history! This book contains so much about the French Revolution and the French themselves. It also contains fascinating facts about the Whiskey Rebellion.

The best way I could describe this book is SO FULL! Good reads to me are always the hardest to review. The best words are contained in the book itself. I love a good story, and I love to learn. The reader gets both in this novel.

Really and truly don’t miss out on this one..especially historical fiction fans!

I received this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
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