29 Sep 2013

A PLACE OF SECRETS.

A PLACE OF SECRETS by RACHEL HORE.

SOURCE: Ex-library stock.

The night before it all begins, Jude has the dream again ...

Can dreams be passed down through families? As a child Jude suffered a recurrent nightmare: running through a dark forest, crying for her mother. Now her six-year-old niece, Summer, is having the same dream, and Jude is frightened for her.

A successful auctioneer, Jude is struggling to come to terms with the death of her husband. When she's asked to value a collection of scientific instruments and manuscripts belonging to Anthony Wickham, a lonely 18th century astronomer, she leaps at the chance to escape London for the untamed beauty of Norfolk, where she grew up.

As Jude untangles Wickham's tragic story, she discovers threatening links to the present. What have Summer's nightmares to do with Starbrough folly, the eerie crumbling tower in the forest from which Wickham and his adopted daughter Esther once viewed the night sky? With the help of Euan, a local naturalist, Jude searches for answers in the wild, haunting splendour of the Norfolk woods. Dare she leave behind the sadness in her own life, and learn to love again?
...... Outer back cover.

FIRST SENTENCE: The night before it all began, Jude has the dream again.

MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 342): He pushed open the trapdoor and a shaft of sunlight fell down across the two women, like the hand of God in a medieval painting, Jude thought, dazzled, feeling transported into some other reality.

MY THOUGHTS: A multi-layered read, A Place Of Secrets chronicles the modern day story of Jude alongside the unfolding tale of Esther, an 18th century astronomer, whose journals Jude happens across when searching through some old manuscripts in her role as researcher for an auction house. This is a wonderfully mesmerising story of how the past can effect the present, of whether dreams can be passed down through the generations. 

My only real criticism being the myriad of coincidences that on occasion verged on the absurd, by the end of the novel stretching credulity to its limits. Oh that, and the fact that some of the dialogue was at times a little too Bodice-ripper like for my personal taste. 

However, able to get past these slight annoyances I found the book very readable, Esther's diary entries particularly engaging, the astronomy aspect fascinating.




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21 comments:

Kelly said...

Despite the criticisms you mentioned, I think this is one I would really enjoy! It may have to go on my wish list.

Trac~ said...

Hey stranger - just stopping by to say hello and let you know I have officially started blogging again - woo hoo! :) My first post will be up tomorrow morning. Hopefully you'll get a chance to say hello! Have a great night! :) Miss you! xoxoxo

Suko said...

This sounds quite good to me (except for the bodice ripping portions). Wonderful review, as usual, Tracy!

chitra said...

Hi PW,
Just peeping here to say hello. Just wanted to visit my friends blgs whenever I get time. take care.read the review.
Will the dreams pass from one person to other?. Even though a fiction makes me wonder. is there is any scientific basis to this?

Brian Joseph said...

This sounds like it has some plot elements that would make it very appealing. However I think that I might find those coincidences hard to take. I often find that I can not get passed stuff like that.

Barbara said...

The cover is enough to make me want to read it - and although the coincidences might be a bit annoying I think I will give it a go. Thanks for sharing it.

Arti said...

I love that cover design! And going by your review it seems a pretty decent book to read as well! A wonderful review Tracy, have a lovely day :)

Bo said...

It does sound intriguing to me. Not too sure of the bodice ripping text, but I might be able to look past that. I will definitely check it out.

Tammy @ Bo's Book Nook

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Hm... doesn't bother me that much so I might enjoy this one more.

Mamakucingbooks said...

Hi Tracy...am back LOL...was busy. Moving to new house.

so happy now coz have a library in this house :)

Lovely review. will look out for this book

Blond Duck said...

It sounds really intriguing, even with the smut.

Shooting Stars Mag said...

That's great you found this one interesting, despite some of the "not-so-great aspects." Interesting premise.

Naida said...

Sounds like you enjoyed it overall, in spite of the few qualms you had. I like the whole dream aspect.

Stephanie@Fairday's Blog said...

Overall- this sounds like a good read. I love astronomy- so that aspect intrigues me. Plus- as a child I had the same dream over and over again for years and I am curious about this one now!

Thanks for sharing your honest review. :)

Trac~ said...

Hey friend - another great book review! One day I'm going to be able to actually look for and read some of these great finds! :) On another note, I wanted to let you know that I changed my blog address back to the original of: http://livinginhighcotten.blogspot.com instead of what I sent you earlier in the week. Because that way I don't have to go through each of my followers to tell them to change their links. HA! Hope all is well your way - please stop by and say hello when you get a chance! Big hugs! xoxoxo

StarTraci said...

Wow! What a great read this seems to be -- I have been plagued by nightmares, several recurrent, so I love the premise.
:-)
Traci

So many books, so little time said...

Fab review, despite the small qualms I think I would get on with this. Thanks for reviewing

Lainy http://www.alwaysreading.net

Claudine G. said...

Sounds interesting though I'm not a big fan of coincidence in stories. I might get to this after I'm through with my to-reads.

Damyanti said...

Love that first line, and the premise of the book.

Cherie Reich said...

What a great first line! Thanks for the review!

Betty Manousos said...

a brilliant review, tracy. thank you.
this book sounds like it's right up my alley.

big hugs!