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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it is still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Here Burns My Candle: A Novel Paperback – March 16, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 249 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Prolific and popular Christy winner Higgs (Whence Came a Prince) returns to Scotland with this historical tale set in the 1745 Jacobite rebellion led by Charles Edward Stuart, grandson of the deposed King James. In Edinburgh, Lady Elisabeth Kerr brings beauty, modest origins, and Highland-born sympathy for Bonnie Prince Charlie to her marriage to the handsome royalist Lord Donald Kerr, who loves his wife and has an eye for beautiful women. She secretly follows the auld ways, pagan worship of the moon. Donald, too, has his secret affairs; his widowed mother, Dowager Lady Marjory Kerr, has bags of gold hidden away. The story begins slowly, picking up speed after characters and tensions are introduced and rebellious forces take Edinburgh. The characters are remarkably flawed—the better to be redeemed in an evangelical Christian novel—though Donald's flaws and Elisabeth's notable patience may try some readers' patience. Higgs is a stickler for period authenticity and has done her homework on history and dialect. Fans have been waiting five years for this novel and will not be disappointed. (Mar.)
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From Booklist

As a Highlander, Elisabeth Kerr is delighted when she hears that bonny Prince Charlie is marching on Edinburgh, intent on claiming his father’s throne. The rest of Elisabeth’s family, including her mother-in-law Dowager Lady Marjory Kerr, is less than thrilled with the idea given that they owe their position in society to the British crown. When it seems as if the Prince actually has a chance of taking back Scotland, allegiances in the Kerr household quickly shift, but even as the Kerrs try to weather the turbulent political climate during 1745–1746, other family secrets threaten to tear them apart. In the end, though, only their faith can save both Elisabeth and Marjory. Based on the first part of the Book of Ruth, Christy-award winner Higgs’s latest richly detailed, leisurely paced novel about two women whose faith brings them closer together is a compelling tale of love, loss, faith, and forgiveness that is certain to please both inspirational readers and fans of well-crafted historical fiction. --John Charles
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 467 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook; 1st edition (March 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400070015
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400070015
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (249 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #136,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Michael R. Deutsch on March 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
"Here Burns My Candle" was a wonderful combination of the book of Ruth and a fictional story set in Scotland. Liz told the story of Ruth and Naomi in a way which brought their story to life. It was obvious Liz did a great deal of research, Biblical as well as historical. For me, this helped the book become more alive.

At times Liz used Scottish dialect in order to enhance the story. I will warn you, you will have to use the glossary which was thankfully put in at the end of the book. The book is long, over 450 pages, and at times, it could get a little slow.

In the end, it's a powerful story about a widowed mother in law, her two sons and their wives. There is war, there is worship of a pagan God, there is questioning of God's plan and purpose. There is conflict, yet in the end, God's love rules supreme. If you like Liz Curtis Higg's books, you will certainly like this one.

This was book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah.
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Format: Paperback
This is the first novel I have read by Liz Curtis Higgs. Here Burns My Candle is the story of a Lowlander family in 1745. Lady Marjory Kerr has taken up residence in Edinburgh, along with her two sons and their wives.

She and her hand-picked daughter-in-law, Janet, love to participate in all that the upper society has to offer. The death of her husband has left her fairly well off with income from lands around a country estate. That was his love; hers was the city life and all it had to offer. While keeping her gold hidden under her chamber floor, in her heart she hides the guilt she feels from urging her husband to keep them in a fashionable residence in the city. Her sons can do no wrong: she spoils them and their wives, providing them the money to live on and a place of residence.

Lady Elizabeth Kerr, on the other hand, married Lord Donald Kerr out of love. She is a Highlander by birth and therefore from a different social level. She is an expert seamstress and busies herself much of the time with beautiful stitchery. She is not as enamored of social standing as are her mother-in-law and sister-in-law. She is kind hearted and humble. She secretly worships the moon as taught by her family, though she dutifully attends church services with the Kerrs. Unbeknownst to herself and the rest of the family, her husband has secrets of his own.

Here Burns My Candle is rich with description. At one point I felt like I should make scones and have tea! I liked the way the characters developed through adversity, and how they came to know or come back to the one, true God. Well-researched Scottish history made me think I should dig into a history book on my own.

Love, betrayal, loss, redemption; all rolled into one satisfying novel.
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Format: Paperback
The second half of Here Burns My Candle is full of suspense and unexpected heartbreak. Through it, two women, Elisabeth and her mother-in-law, Marjorie, learn to trust God and love each other. God speaks to them through His word, then patiently waits for them to respond in the midst of trials.
Unfortunately the reader has to be patient too, because the first half of the book moves very slowly. Higgs creates a real picture of 16th century Edinburgh in the midst of the Jacobite rebellion. We meet Marjorie, who loves only her sons and her gold, and Elisabeth, who is having a crisis of faith. We also meet Marjorie's sons and her other daughter-in-law, all of whom have their own issues. But they are very interesting people leading very boring lives. Even when the sons join the Jacobite campaign, we are left behind, watching Marjorie still hoarding her gold and Elisabeth still questioning her faith. The only suspense I felt was wondering what would happen when Bonnie Prince Charlie lost his attempt to win the British throne for his exiled father.
In fact, the real story starts when the Prince's campaign heats up. From that point, the two protagonists face one trial after another. Many of them are personal, but the climax of the story hinges on Charlie's defeat. The growth of the two women through the unexpected plot twists produces a heart wrenching story.
My favorite part of the book was when I realized that it is the retelling of a well loved Bible story. I'm a little dense and didn't get it until almost the end. I'm sure you will recognize it much sooner than I did. Here Burns My Candle, is in fact, just the beginning of the story, so look for the next book which will tell the more familiar part of it.
Pros: Very well written story of God's patience and provision.
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Lady Elisabeth Kerr may have married into a family with different beliefs than her own, but she still holds tightly to the beliefs her own mother held and taught her. She worships in secret, careful that her husband and new family do not discover that she doesn't believe as they do.

Lady Kerr isn't the only one hiding secrets. Although she refuses to believe the rumors, her husband Lord Donald has strayed ~ more than once. She just isn't able to accept his betrayal.

When the rebel army captures their town of Edinburgh in 1745, families and friends are divided as they have to decide where their loyalties lie ~ to the current ruler or to the invading ruler. Lady Kerr and her family find themselves facing dark moments and deep losses and she soon discovers that although her god cannot rescue her, there is a God who can.

My Thoughts

A few years ago I was introduced to Liz Curtis Higgs and I fell in love with her writing. Here Burns My Candle is another book that will find a permanent niche on my bookshelves. Set in Scotland during the year 1745, this story is a more modern retelling of the story of Ruth and Naomi.

While I knew many of the events that were going to happen {based on the Biblical story}, I was completely pulled into the story and still hoping things would be different. Higgs weaves an intricate story of love lost, love regained and ultimately of hope in difficult times.

The end of the book came too quickly, so be thankful there is an amazing sequel to the book ~ run and grab that one as well.
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