Castles in the Clouds
Overview - The first book in the Flowers of Eden series introduced readers to Bryony Linwood, an orphan trying desperately to provide for her sisters in the shadow of the Great Depression. In Castles in the Clouds , we meet one of those sisters--Larkspur Linwood, a young woman who has a passion for teaching but yearns for something more than life as a small-town Arkansas schoolmarm. Read more...
More About Castles in the Clouds by Myra Johnson
The first book in the Flowers of Eden series introduced readers to Bryony Linwood, an orphan trying desperately to provide for her sisters in the shadow of the Great Depression. In Castles in the Clouds
, we meet one of those sisters--Larkspur Linwood, a young woman who has a passion for teaching but yearns for something more than life as a small-town Arkansas schoolmarm.
Young and impressionable, Lark mistakes a college professor's interest for romantic love. When he offers her the chance to join his efforts to start a school in Kenya, she pictures herself bringing the light of knowledge to hundreds of African children eager to learn. But the menial tasks she's assigned at the school aren't so different from life on the farm where she grew up. Miserable and deflated, with her fragile heart broken, she gives up and returns home.
Enter Professor Anson Schafer, whom she met briefly in Kenya. Partially blinded from an eye infection he contracted there, Professor Schafer cannot return to Africa. He has come to Lark's school to recruit teachers like her for a more modest venture--the founding of schools and relief efforts here in the U.S. for those struggling through the Depression.
Still stinging from her experience in Kenya, Lark is reluctant to risk leaving her familiar surroundings, but she knows how great the need has become, and--although this isn't the exciting life she'd envisioned--she finally agrees. As they work side by side, Lark begins to realize that the deepest satisfaction comes not so much from what you do, or where you do it, but from the attitude of your heart.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
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Johnson's second Flowers of Eden inspirational historical romance (after The Sweetest Rain, 2015) focuses on Larkspur Linwood, the sister of previous protagonist Bryony. Lark dreams of becoming a teacher and jumps at the chance to accompany her handsome professor and several others to teach at a school in Kenya. While there, her heart is broken, and she returns home to her grandfather's Arkansas farm, which has been hit hard by drought and the Great Depression. Anson Schafer, who ran the school in Kenya, turns up in Eden, Ark., after returning to the U.S. He dreams of starting a school to educate needy children and Lark decides to help with the plan. As she and Anson get to know each other and battle doubts and fears, love blossoms between them. The plot can be predictable, but readers who enjoy tales set during the Great Depression and have a heart for education will be pleased by this installment. Agent: Natasha Kern, Natasha Kern Literary. (Aug.)