Life in London has lost its sparkle for Stella Simpson.
So when she gets the opportunity to escape to the country for a year, it seems too good a chance to miss. In the beautiful Somerset countryside, the majestic Roseford Hall has been painstakingly restored and is now ready for its grand opening. And as the writer in residence, Stella gets to see it all – from the rowdy resident peacocks, the hidden secrets of the Hall, to befriending the Lord of the Manor himself.
At the other end of Roseford, single father, Chris Charlton is facing his own refurbishment woes. Rocked by a tragedy two years previously, his plans for crumbling Victorian wreck Halstead House are as stuck as he is.
As Roseford Hall prepares to welcome a new era, and Halsted House’s future is under threat, Chris and Stella find themselves drawn to one another. Can they finally leave their pasts behind, and will Chris and Stella be able to embrace their new beginnings together – or apart…
I received a copy of this book from Boldwood Books via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Stella, in her late twenties, is an online journalist living and working in her family home in London. Unexpectedly she is shortlisted for a writer in residence role at Roseford Hall in Somerset. Is this the change she needs to find herself?
Stella and her lovable dog Fitz’s first meeting with Chris is anything but a cute meet. Intuitive Stella soon realises that Chris is hurting, and when she finds out why she wants to help. Chris and Stella are attracted, but they face many conflicts, primarily within themselves to their happiness together.
I love the setting integral to this emotional story and the complex characters who immersed me in their lives. Explores themes of grief and loss sensitively through the characters making this poignant but ultimately uplifting to read.
The romance develops realistically and is lovely to read. The supporting characters are believable, and this is an enjoyable book.
Fay Keenan is the author of the bestselling Little Somerby series of novels. She has led writing workshops with Bristol University and has been a visiting speaker in schools. She is a full-time teacher and lives in Somerset.