Today I’m excited to be taking part in the blog tour for this wonderful book. Published yesterday, it’s sure to be a winner with any reader who loves a good family drama set in a beautiful beach-side location. Thank you to Bookouture for the tour invite. If you get chance, do check out the other reviews on the blog tour.
About the Book
The Cornish beach house creaked in the salty sea wind and, from the weathered wooden porch, Mara watched a lone magpie circle above. It was silly to think that her mother’s spirit was still with her, but Mara felt as if there was something keeping her here. A secret that needed to be told…
When Mara Hughes inherits her late mother’s tumbledown beach house overlooking the bright, sandy sweep of Magpie Cove, it couldn’t have come at a worse time. With her marriage on the rocks and her husband threatening to take the family home, the beach house – with all the bittersweet memories it holds – might be the thing that finally sends Mara’s world crashing down around her. She tells herself she’ll only spend a few days there: sell it and move on to rebuilding her life.
When Mara arrives, the house is in a worse state than she feared – holes in the bedroom ceiling, birds’ nests in the attic and the beautiful, wrap-around porch on the brink of collapse… but she loves it anyway. With all its history it feels like the last link to her late mother and, determined to do whatever it takes to keep it in the family, Mara strikes a deal with local handyman – and town heartthrob – Brian Oakley to save the crumbling cottage from ruin.
But when a box of unopened old letters arrives on her new doorstep – a bequest from her mother’s will – Mara’s resolve to save the beach house will be tested to the limit. Because Mara’s mother’s perfect childhood in Magpie Cove was forever spoiled by one haunting day in July, and the letters contain a secret about her family that Mara can scarcely believe to be true…
A story of secrets, family and forgiveness, this heartfelt read set in beautiful Cornwall is perfect for fans of Susanne O’Leary, Fern Britton and Rosanna Ley.
What I thought
I really enjoyed this book. I loved the setting. Set in Cornwall, with a tumble down house taking centre stage in the story, the Beach House sits – as you might expect – right on the edge of the beach in a small village called Magpie Cove. The picture on the cover perfectly replicates how I imagine the house to be, and it was this cover that instantly attracted me to the book. Wouldn’t you just love to live there?
Mara can’t quite believe that her husband Gideon has asked her to move out of the family home and find herself somewhere else to live along with their twin children. Gideon has found himself a new woman and Mara doesn’t fit with his plans any longer.
As if that wasn’t enough, Mara’s mother Abby has died leaving Mara a house that she had no idea her mother even owned. Mara is hoping she’ll be able to sell the house and use the money to buy somewhere for herself and her two children to start a new life. When she arrives at Magpie Cove and sees the extent of the deterioration of the house, she wonders whether it is even worth selling – who would want to buy a ramshackle house with a hole in the roof and damp in every room.
There are lots of different threads running through this narrative. With mysteries and secrets to discover, this is a story with hidden depths. Why has Abby never taken Mara to the house, and why did Mara grow up without any other family apart from her mum. When some letters are passed on to Mara by her Mothers solicitor, Mara finds answers at least in part to why she had such an isolated childhood and there’s a further shock in store for Mara as she reads through them.
As well as some very moving aspects to the plot there are many, more lighthearted moments running through as well. As Mara spends more time at the Beach House trying to get it ready to sell, she makes some good friends there and at one point seriously considers living in the Beach House herself.
It’s such a good page turner, what with her obnoxious husband to deal with, the lovely carpenter/surfer Brian Oakley adding a little romance here and there, the sadness surrounding her mum Abby and all to the backdrop of the beautiful Cornish coast, it’s definitely a book that will have its readers captivated.
♥ Happy Reading ♥
Kennedy Kerr is the author of A Spell of Murder, a witch themed cozy mystery, and The House at Magpie Cove (November 2020) and The Café at Magpie Cove (coming in 2021). She adores beaches, lochs and magical places, and loves writing about small communities, mysteries and family secrets.
Kennedy also loves cooking and baking all types of food, which is almost as much fun as eating it.
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