A captivating dual timeline romance set in Cornwall! Perfect for fans of Sarah Burton, Stacey Halls, Jessie Burton and Kate Mosse.
Two centuries apart, two lonely women seek a place to call home…
Cornwall, England, 2015
Nomadic project manager Anna Pritchard has arrived in the village of Porthnevek to oversee the construction of a trendy new glamping site. But with many members of the local community strongly opposed to the development, she quickly finds herself ostracised and isolated.
Seeking to ease her loneliness, Anna begins volunteering at a nearby National Trust house in Trelissick, once owned by the aristocratic Daniell family. In her new role, Anna soon feels her attachment to both Porthnevek and Trelissick deepening. And as she spends more and more time steeped in local history, it seems that the past and the present are beginning to collide…
After losing her brother in the Battle of Waterloo, French army seamstress Thérèse Ruguel is taken to London by war artist Thomas Chalmers, becoming his reluctant muse. But with Thomas’s mother unhappy with the arrangement, Thérèse is soon sent to Cornwall as a lady’s maid to Elizabeth Daniell, a kindly relative of the Chalmers family.
Able to speak only a little English — and with the other servants suspicious of her — Thérèse feels lost and alienated. And when she discovers her brother may still be alive, she must decide whether to continue with her new life in England, or brave the dangerous journey back to her homeland…
What became of Thérèse? Can Anna unearth the ghosts of the past?
And has Anna finally found where she belongs…?
THE FORGOTTEN MAID is a beautiful time-shift romance set in Cornwall between the Regency era and the modern day. It is the first book in the Cornish Echoes Dual Timeline Mystery series.
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I received a digital ARC of this book, in exchange for an honest review.
This is the third book, by this author, that I have read and am now convinced that I am a fan. Whilst each book has been different, the haunting style and all engaging story, are common threads. I found myself utterly enchanted, and at times unnerved.
The Forgotten Maid sweeps effortlessly through the dual timelines as Anna – in the present day -seeks to find a place to call home and a purpose to end her wanderings. Thérèse – in Regency times – is grieving for her brother and hoping to be accepted and welcomed into a home.
This is one of those stories which will stay with me. The eerie similarities between the dual timelines was addictive and I found it impossible to put the book down. The descriptions of the local areas transported me to the Cornish Coast. I could almost taste the salt in the air as the waves crashed into the cliffs. There is a passage where the characters are forced to explore an abandoned mine, it was so well written that I honestly felt claustrophobic, my heart was racing.
Anna and Thérèse are both beautifully drawn and I felt wholly invested in their stories. Whilst there was a couple of centuries between them, they both had to deal with personal loss and had to adjust to their new normal. The two timelines ran seamlessly as we switched between the present day and Regency times.
I’ve said this before, but I find an ethereal feel to Jane’s writing. I could sense the ghosts of the past leaving trails from across the years. I would recommend this book without reservation. It is beautifully constructed and left me looking forward to future stories.
Jane Cable writes romance with a twist for Sapere Books, and The Forgotten Maid her first novel set in her adopted county of Cornwall. She is lucky enough to have been married to the love of her life for more than twenty-five years, and loves spending time outdoors, preferably close to the sea on the wild and rugged north Cornwall coast.
She also writes emotional women’s fiction as Eva Glyn, published by One More Chapter.
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