Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Book Review: The Girl at the Window

By Becky Gulc

‘A house full of history is bound to have secrets...

Ponden Hall is a centuries-old house on the Yorkshire moors, a magical place full of stories. It's also where Trudy Heaton grew up. And where she ran away from...

Now, after the devastating loss of her husband, she is returning home with her young son, Will, who refuses to believe his father is dead.

While Trudy tries to do her best for her son, she must also attempt to build bridges with her eccentric mother. And then there is the Hall itself: fallen into disrepair but generations of lives and loves still echo in its shadows, sometimes even reaching out to the present...’ (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon UK.)

The Girl at the Window is another fantastic novel by one of my favourite authors, Rowan Coleman. This is definitely one of my favourite books of the year and Rowan is an author who just delivers every time. The books just keeping getting better and better. Each time I think she can’t surely surpass the previous one, she does it again.

For me this is a perfect autumn read as the evenings start to draw in and the weather turns. You won’t want to put this book down once you start, so make yourself comfortable! I’ve seen on social media that Rowan has spent a lot of time in Haworth (the village where the Bronte’s lived) and specifically at Ponden Hall (Wuthering Heights) and it’s been clear she has an affinity with the place and the Bronte family – her passion definitely comes across in the novel. There was such a strong sense of place throughout the present and the past. I just loved it and can’t wait to return to Haworth myself.

This novel has a bit of everything really and that’s what makes it so strong. I just loved the characters: Trudy, her mum, and lovely son Will. There was a great dynamic between them all. I loved exploring the background to the somewhat strained mother/daughter relationship and admired Trudy’s strength at living with the loss of her husband, and Will’s belief he hasn’t gone forever.

There is a supernatural element to the story and this definitely unnerved me at times, but I enjoyed being spooked. It was certainly enchanting and some elements were really very moving indeed; I can’t say I expected to become as moved as I was! There’s also an abundance of love: love in the present, love in the past, love that is straightforward, love that is difficult, love for the Brontes...this book has it all.

This is a book to fall in love with, a book to hug when you’re finished with it… you’ll be sad that it has ended but so grateful it was written. I know this is a book I’ll always remember. Highly recommended!

Thanks to Ebury Press for the book in exchange for an honest review.

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