The Lark and the Laurel by Barbara Willard is set against the historical backdrop of the end of the War of the Roses and the beginning of the reign of Henry Tudor. Cecily Jolland finds herself abrupted dropped off at her aunt's home when her father has to flee from England. Here she is no longer sheltered away from the world but must participate in the daily activities of her aunt's home. She becomes friends with her neighbor Lewis Mallory and learns to love the freedom her aunt has given her. By the end of the first winter, she dreads the thought of her father returning to her for it would mean the end of her freedom and the end of her friendship. She finds that the key to her future comes from remembering her past and offers an escape from the life her father plans for her.
The Lark and the Laurel is an excellent read for ages 10 and up. Unlike some of Willard's other historical fiction, this one is only loosely tied to its historical setting and focuses solely on the fictional lives of its two main characters Cecily Jolland and Lewis Mallory. It's definitely a girly book with themes of independence woven in with a bit of romance.