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The Winter Rose
by Melanie Dobson

Published: 2022-01-11T00:0
Paperback : 384 pages
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In this gripping WWII time-slip novel from the author whose books have been called “propulsive” and a “must-read” (Publishers Weekly), Grace Tonquin is an American Quaker who works tirelessly in Vichy France to rescue Jewish children from the Nazis. After crossing the treacherous ...
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Introduction

In this gripping WWII time-slip novel from the author whose books have been called “propulsive” and a “must-read” (Publishers Weekly), Grace Tonquin is an American Quaker who works tirelessly in Vichy France to rescue Jewish children from the Nazis. After crossing the treacherous Pyrénées, Grace returns home to Oregon with a brother and sister whose parents were lost during the war. Though Grace and her husband love Élias and Marguerite as their own, echoes of Grace’s past and trauma from the Holocaust tear the Tonquin family apart.

More than fifty years after they disappear, Addie Hoult arrives at Tonquin Lake, hoping to find the Tonquin family. For Addie, the mystery is a matter of life and death for her beloved mentor Charlie, who is battling a genetic disease. Though Charlie refuses to discuss his ties to the elusive Tonquins, finding them is the only way to save his life and mend the wounds from his broken past.

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Excerpt

Chapter One

Saint-Lizier, France
September 1943
Sunlight broke through the mist like a spotlight in Hollywood, the crimson globe guiding Grace Tonquin and the twelve children in her care. It was only minutes now before they’d be tucked away in the cathedral of Saint-Lizier, hidden from the light. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

A winter rose blooms in the Pyrénées when the children near Spain and then again at the end of the story when Charlie comes home. What is the significance of this flower?
When Grace and the children finally reach safety, she reflects on the fact that all they have been through will shape the children for the rest of their lives. In what ways do we see these experiences shaping Charlie, Louis, and Marguerite? What childhood experiences—good or bad—have shaped your life?
In spite of Grace’s desire to rescue children, she isn’t able to save Louis or Charlie from the wounds of their past. Is there anything else she could have done as a foster parent and friend to love them more? What, if anything, would you have done?
What is the significance of Addie throwing the rocks and later her wedding band into the water? Have you ever had to release a burden that you weren’t meant to bear?
As a Quaker, Grace actively seeks God’s peace in simplicity and quiet spaces. “Shekinah for her soul,” she calls it. Do you have a quiet place where you can still your heart and listen?
From Caleb’s furniture refinishing to Roland’s renovations on the abandoned château, restoration is a key theme in The Winter Rose. While Charlie receives forgiveness in his younger years for what he did to the Tonquin family, he is given the opportunity much later in life for personal restoration. Do you have a story of redemption or restoration? Or is there a relationship that you still hope to restore?

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