Sunday, October 2, 2011
Review: THE ROSE GARDEN by Susanna Kearsley
Susanna Kearsley knocks us off our feet with her spectacular tale of love overcoming all obstacles in her wondrous time travel romance, The Rose Garden.
Mourning the death of her beloved sister, Eva returns to Cornwall to scatter her ashes at the estate where they spent their happiest childhood summers. The people and the countryside are as she remembers--but not quite. Voices speak from empty rooms, paths appear in places where none exist, and a handsome man dressed in breeches and boots beckons her to another time.
Daniel doesn't know what to make of the beautiful woman wearing strange clothes who appears on the hillside beside him. 1715 England is a dangerous place, with the Jacobites threatening the reign of the newly crowned George I. Is she involved in the upcoming confrontation between the supporters of George I and those of James Stuart, whom some consider the rightful king?
The Rose Garden is a masterwork of suspenseful romance. With vivid descriptions of the unchanging Atlantic and its salt spray, the green of the hilly Cornwall estate's rose gardens, and faithful renditions of the tensions and way of life of two very different eras, Ms. Kearsley melds past and present into a coherent whole that firmly anchors the reader into each time period. We live Eva's confusion, disbelief and terror as she fades in and out of a past where danger lurks at every turn.
Both Eva and Daniel are people of their eras, but unique enough to accept something as outlandish as time travel, and to love a person of extraordinary background. Daniel is as forceful as any eighteenth century man, but he also possesses the sensitivity a modern woman appreciates. And while Eva has plenty of twenty-first century backbone, she is smart enough to adapt to the harsh conditions in 1715 without betraying herself.
The romance is breath-taking, as Eva and Daniel, stronger together than singly, seek to triumph over villains and situations that would have destroyed lesser souls. And Ms. Kearsley leaves us gasping at the end with a corker of a surprise.
Read The Rose Garden. You'll be happy you did.
Thank you all,
ARC provided by Sourcebooks