Mornings at Character Café — with Charlotte Harper

Charlotte joins Amy at Character Café

Good morning, Charlotte.  Welcome to Character Cafe.  I’m so sorry to hear of your father’s death.  What a wonderful man.  I heard him speak once, and I’ll never forget his powerful sermon.

Yes… well, he was certainly sought after as a speaker. He… uh…

I’m sorry.  It’s probably hard to talk about him so soon after the loss.  And I’ve heard it’s not always easy being a preacher’s kid.  With all his traveling I’m sure you feel like you missed out on precious time with him.  Let’s change the subject.  I heard you’ve relocated to the Lake District?

Yes, out of necessity.  We had no money left once all of our creditors were paid.  My mother is trying to make peace with her father in the hope that we can live with him at Longdale Manor.  So far, things aren’t going as well as Mother hoped.

Oh, I didn’t realize your mother was estranged from her family.

Forgive me, but that is another topic I’d rather avoid.

Ouch.  I certainly have foot-in-the-mouth disorder this morning!  I hope things work out.  Can you tell me where you’re living in the meantime?  

We are living on a farm, the Storey’s farm near Keswick.  My mother’s childhood friend’s home.  It’s been an adventure since the moment we were picked up at the train station by Ian Storey, and I had to ride in the back of the wagon sitting on a hay bale. 

Oh goodness!  Not what you are used to I’m sure.  After your time in London in a fancier circle.   

No.  However, Ian and his family are very kind – though his father is a bit gruff.  I’m not certain Mr. Storey is happy to have houseguests.  I’ve actually come to enjoy helping with chores, especially with the lambs.  Furthermore, Ian is… Well, he’s not what I expected.

Ooo!  Do I detect a romance in the works?

I’m going to keep all of my secrets between myself and this diary of mine for now.  

Fair!  Now what can I get you from the Character Cafe Menu?  

Perhaps you could choose for me?

Gladly!  You have to try our variation on Sticky Toffee Pudding.  Since, that is a dessert supposedly created in a hotel in Ullswater, which is in the Lake District, I believe.  

Yes it is. However, I’ve never heard of Sticky Toffee Pudding.

That’s because it was after your time, the 1960s. Ours is a Pennsylvanian cupcake twist created by a character from another novel.  I can’t say this too loudly, but I like it better.  Here’s the recipe:

As for tea, I was going to go for one of the fruits native to the Lake District, but we already put apples in our version of sticky toffee pudding.  So how about Darjeeling?  We have some from Fortnum & Mason!

Classic World Teas from Fortnum & Mason — Darjeeling

I would like that very much.  

Readers, I cannot wait for you to meet Charlotte and the modern day heroine, Gwen, who ends up at Longdale Manor after she is basically banished from London for making a mistake in her grandfather’s  high-pressure art auction business.  The Legacy of Longdale Manor is such a beautiful story of how God can redeem our pain, whether it’s from our own mistakes or from sinful actions of family members.  And though this is fiction, I’ve seen how God truly uses our challenges to teach and comfort others decades and even centuries later through our writings — look at Job, the Apostle Paul, C.S. Lewis, Charles Spurgeon, to name a few.

Here’s more about Carrie Turansky’s latest novel, The Legacy of Longdale Manor:

Two women–a century apart–embark on a journey to healing, faith, forgiveness, and romance.

In 2012, art historian Gwen Morris travels to England’s Lake District to appraise the paintings and antiques of an old family friend, hoping to prove herself to her prestigious grandfather. While at Longdale Manor, she meets David Bradford–the owner’s handsome grandson–who is desperate to save the crumbling estate by turning it into a luxury hotel. When Gwen stumbles upon a one-hundred-year-old journal and an intricately carved shepherd’s staff similar to one in a photo of her parents, she’s left searching for answers.

In 1912, after her father’s death, Charlotte Harper uncovers a painful family secret she can only confess to her journal. She and her family travel to the Lake District to stay on a sheep farm, hoping eventually to find a home with Charlotte’s grandfather at Longdale Manor, but old wounds and bitter regrets make it a difficult challenge. As Charlotte grows closer to shepherd Ian Storey and rebuilds her shattered faith, she must decide whether she will ever trust in love again.

Praise for The Legacy of Longdale Manor

“This novel will stir your faith–and your desire to visit England’s Lake District!”

Julie Klassen

“Turansky opens the door of Longdale Manor and invites readers to explore the secrets hidden inside.”

Melanie Dobson

Carrie is offering this lovely GIVEAWAY this week:

Carrie’s giveway, including the softcover, tea, Beatrice Potter tea towels

One response to “Mornings at Character Café — with Charlotte Harper”

  1. This was delightful, Amy! Thank you for your creativity!!

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