Safe Haven by Jean Holbrook Mathews

Safe Haven

With her family left destitute by her father’s recent death, Susanna Thayer believes her only hope is to marry life-long friend Jonathan Burnley. But Jonathan heeds the counsel of his father, an unscrupulous lawyer, to marry a cousin of greater wealth and position, and Susanna is forced to endure grueling labor in a cotton mill far from her remaining family. When she and her best friend, Jane, become involved with the Mormon Church and are thus...

Details Safe Haven

TitleSafe Haven
Release DateFeb 1st, 2013
PublisherCovenant Communications, Inc
GenreRomance, Lds, Lds Fiction, Christianity, Historical, Historical Fiction, Fiction

Reviews Safe Haven

  • Shauna
    As I sit here in my warm home, surrounded by my many electronic devices, convenient foods and abundant blessings I am always humbled by stories like this....How blessed we are by the hardships of our ancestors!Susanna feels that life is well planned for her and that her future is a bright one.Then things start to fall apart and she is asked to step out into an unknown future.Time and time again her path is shown a different direction...but she "t...
  • Katie W
    Good story, especially if you like a lot of historical LDS facts concerning textile mills, the early days of the Church in New England, going to CA by ship, etc.
  • Verona
    Church History has always been a fascinating subject for me. I love reading novels about how the pioneers of our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, made their various journeys and treks across the United States to the Salt Lake valley in Utah. This story takes two young women from Boston around Cape Horn on a sailing ship to California to follow their new religion. I learned a lot about the travels and sacrifices that people...
  • Laura
    This book had a good story, it just moved too slow for my attention span! I found myself skimming because I have read so many similar stories, just to find a part that was a "new" read! After reading 4 or 5 books about the saints that traveled by boat in the last year, there was little "new" material for me. For someone less well read in the genre it would be a more enjoyable story.
  • Katherine Yost
    Safe Haven is about a girl named Susanna Thayer who's father recently passed away. A young man named Jonathan Burnley wants to marry Susanna, but Susanna feels that she needs to think about it. After a short while of thinking about it, Susanna tells Jonathan that she is ready to marry him, only to find that Jonathan chose to marry his cousin of greater wealth and position. Susanna goes to work at a cotton mill to help support her family. She star...
  • Dad
    My wife and I listened to this story on our way to Portland to my cousin JoAnn's funeral. It was very interesting and I couldn't wait to see how it turned out. I thought at first that Jonathan was going to be a bad character but he was just sordidly influenced by his greedy father. It turned out he was sorry for not marrying Susanna Thayer. Susanna despite undergoing so many sad things continues to remain choice and loving. I really felt bad when...
  • Krista
    I would give this book 2.5 stars. I liked some of the characters and there were some cute and good parts. I felt like Susanna's conversion to the Mormon faith was pretty glossed over. It felt like we never knew what sustained her amidst all her hardships. It just felt like this book was one hardship after another and the ending was too brief and sudden. It wasn't really an awful book but I wasn't a huge fan either. I just feel kind of sad even th...
  • Julie
    I'd never heard of the saints who traveled from Boston to San Francisco on a ship. It was an interesting read, but seemed to meander. I wish the back copy didn't say so much about it because the whole time I knew how the story was going to end.
  • Alicia
    This book was written very differently from most novels I've read. It felt a little bit like a history. Or even a documentary. I think the author tried to cover too much in one book.
  • Kathryn
    Enjoyable, historical romance with a happy ending after many downward slopes.Susanna Thayer's future looked bright. She had a loving family, a friend and confidant that would also be her future husband. Then her father died, causing her financial status to change. Her mother and herself took in work where they could, but after much thought the solution became to accept Jonathan's offer of marriage and forgo the mourning period to secure the famil...
  • Rebecca
    This book helped me appreciate what the conditions were like for people, especially women, who lived during the time that the Latter-day Saints were gathering to various places and making their way to Salt Lake City. For some people the experience was wrought with many hardships and sacrifices. The story line is not based on any one person's life. However, the author did her share of research to help the reader understand what life was like worki...
  • Lachell
    I love historical fiction, and I especially love to learn more about events that I know little about. This story was a good overview of the Mormon pioneers that traveled by sea on the Brooklyn, arrived in San Francisco with the intent to meet Brigham Young's company there, only to learn that they had to cross the Sierra Nevada range to the Salt Lake Valley instead. Their journey was difficult and it makes you wonder how these people had the will ...
  • Michelle
    While a compelling story in some ways - about a young woman's journey to joining the Church and the arduous, hardship-filled journey to the Salt Lake valley to join the other Saints - a bit cheesy and slow in other ways. I had to put down this book a couple of times before I got through it. Others may find more value, however in the lesson to be learned about how challenges one faces in life may compel one on the path that God intends for them in...
  • Melissa
    This is a great but little known story of the pioneers who traveled to California via ship from New York. Although the main characters are fictional, the experiences that they endure are based on the real stories of real pioneers. I thought the author did a great job of really making those experiences come alive through her fictional heroine. My only criticism would be that the ending seemed a bit rushed. All in all though it was a great read.
  • Hilary
    The descriptions of historical figures and events were intriguing and well-written. The characters and storyline were mostly plausible and fairly engaging. The ending, however, felt rushed and awkward. It seemed to me that the author was more interested in writing a history than a novel. Once the major events ended and obstacles were overcome, it was a race to wrap up the characters' lives to end the book as quickly as possible.
  • Tiffany
    This was a great story of the pioneers that traveled from Boston to San Francisco by the Brooklyn ship. It touches on history of Sutters Fort, San Francisco,Sacramento and Salt Lake City and eventually what was probably later called St. George. It isnt a thorough account of the history but touches on many experiences that these pioneers would have experienced. Over all a very good read that I finished in just a couple of days. Sorry family....I a...
  • Tausha
    Great story! Very humbling. I am grateful for such strong examples of faith. There were some slow parts, but over all I appreciated all the history involved. I felt like the ending was pretty abrupt and would have loved seeing more of the story unfold after all the many trials, but for now I'll just believe they lived happily ever after. :)
  • Alisha
    I got this on audio a long time ago but hadn't finished it, after finally finishing it I am frustrated I didn't finish it sooner as it was a very delightful book! It is a historical fiction about some mormon pioneers who traveled by boat to California. There were some sad parts but I liked the ending. (though I was a little nervous at times how there could be a happy ending...)
  • Kris Irvin
    I thought this book was very well written for being an LDS novel. I was impressed with all the twists and turns the story took. And I liked the characters a lot. I thought the ending was horrid and contrived. If only it hadn't ended like that. I just. What implausible ridiculousity. Still a fun, light read. Great for when you want something to just chillax with.
  • Debbie
    This was a good book. A young woman expects to marry her childhood friend and sweetheart, but after her father dies, her friend is told by his father to marry someone with more money. The young lady has many adventures, during which she meets the young man several times. They finally meet in the Salt Lake Valley during the time of the pioneers. My daughter and I both liked this book.
  • Dorry Lou
    An interesting story about the struggles of a girl & her family after the father dies. They eventually come in contact with the Mormons and decide to come to America. After arriving in N.Y. they take the ship Brooklyn heading for Calif. Most of us are aware of the hardships of that voyage. There was enough mystery, misfortune & excitement to want to read more.
  • Debbie
    This was alright. Very different from what I was expecting. Hardly any romance, definitely a background plot. A little slow at times. I think the ending was a bit rushed. She tried to cover too much in too short of time so nothing was too in depth, including character development.
  • Julie
    This was a historical fiction about a girl who came to California on a boat from New York with Samuel Brannon. It was interesting, definitely read more like a list of facts then lots of story, but it was still interesting.
  • Tenille
    Good story, there are not many books about the pioneers who came on the Brooklyn. It was interesting to me to read since I had family that came on the same ship. Susanna faced a lot of hard times, but held onto her faith, even when it was hard.
  • Ashlee Anderson
    Cute story. Very predictable. It was a little drawn out at times and I found myself wanting the people to die off faster so the story would get a move on, and then I feel like it suddenly ends. I like a little more closure, but overall it was a good little book.
  • Patricia
    2 stars.If you want to learn about history of Sam Brannan and his ship to Ca, the gold rush, ship sailing, young girls in textile mills, inheritance, the pioneer trek, etc., read this. If you are more interested in the story itself, don't read this. Finished 19th
  • Jolynn
    I really liked this book, but there were times I found it hard to read, especially when I knew the ending, but I decided to push forward and I was glad I did. I did feel things went really fast at the end. Yet this was a great read.
  • Amy
    Enjoyed seeing my family mentioned in the book. Captain James brown who settled Ogden. I wasn't too sure about the name of the ship doctor though. Dr. Seagraves doesn't instill a lot of confidence in making it through the journey.
  • Naomi
  • Vicki
    Nice light read.