I always look forward to reading the latest release from Kirsty Ferry, as not only are they so easy to get into, they are full to bursting with everything I need to fully escape from real life for a little while!
A Secret Rose is no different. A time slip based in Cornwall, art dealer Merryn Burton arrives at Pencradoc, a beautiful old mansion owned by the Penhaligon brothers. Merryn instantly feels a connection with Kit, and as her stay continues it is clear that the house is holding more than just valuable artwork, as secrets from long ago make themselves known.
Once more, a beautiful old house dominates the setting of the novel. The author has a real passion and a knack for bringing bricks and mortar to life through her words, so that by the end I always consider the house to be just as central to the story as any of the human characters. In this case, Pencradoc is tainted by the past and long held secrets corrupt the lives of its current inhabitants, leading to an intense conclusion.
I was particularly drawn to the wonderfully named Zennor in the past, and I wonder whether her daughter, Elsie will be the subject of a future novel? I’m hoping that the author hasn’t quite finished with Pencradoc just yet! For me, the past characters held more weight, and I found myself much more invested in their stories. As much as I found Merryn and Kit to be likeable, it was the past which really intrigued and held my attention.
The dark gothic undertones are present throughout, as is the twisted fairytale theme. I really enjoyed this aspect of her last novel Spring at Taigh Fallon, and it is used to great effect once more here.
If you enjoy your romance novel with a darkly gothic and supernatural twist, then I recommend A Secret Rose. I read this in just a day; Kirsty’s novels are so incredibly easy to just pick up and fly through, making them the perfect accompaniment to a cocktail (or two) and a sun lounger on holiday!
“Wherever you go, I will follow …”
Merryn Burton is excited to travel down to Cornwall to start her first big job for the London art dealers she works for. But as soon as she arrives at Pencradoc, a beautiful old mansion, she realises this will be no ordinary commission.
Not only is Pencradoc filled with fascinating, and possibly valuable artwork, it is also owned by the Penhaligon brothers – and Merryn’s instant connection with Kit Penhaligon could be another reason why her trip suddenly becomes a whole lot more interesting.
But the longer Merryn stays at Pencradoc the more obvious it is that the house has a secret, and a long-forgotten Rose might just hold the key …
*I was sent a review copy of A Secret Rose by the publisher, the decision to read was my own and this review forms my honest opinion.