When Emily Braden's cousin, Harry, asks her to meet him in
Chinon, France, to explore his latest theories about the
Plantagenets, Emily just can't refuse him. Harry has a habit
of "detouring" and leaving Emily to fend for herself so
she's not surprised when Harry doesn't meet her at the
railway station or show up at the Hotel de France. Instead,
Emily immerses herself in the culture and history of Chinon
where she discovers two mysteries, both about women named
Isabelle. What dark secrets have been hidden from the
thirteenth century and from the days of the Nazi occupation?
Emily is drawn closer and closer to two men as she finds
herself pulled into intrigues that could threaten her very
Susanna Kearsley depicts the town of Chinon so vividly that
you feel as if you are walking the streets right along with
Emily. The lush descriptions are almost poetic and I found
myself rereading the lines just to savor the beauty of
Susanna Kearsley's writing. The historical flashbacks are
cleverly woven into the tale, adding a haunting aura of
mystery to the storyline.
SPLENDOUR FALLS draws you into the vacationing lives of a
handful of characters, and it's easy to envision each and
every one of them. Even secondary characters like Thierry
and Jim endear themselves to the readers as we see them
through Emily's eyes. There is a romance that develops
slowly and naturally, as one would expect from the not-so-
adventurous Emily. However it is Emily's tribute to her lost
friend that brought tears to my eyes and to me encapsulates
the power of Susanna Kearsley's character development.
SPLENDOUR FALLS is a masterfully crafted tale that is almost
magical in the way past and present are woven together. I
love how Susanna Kearsley utilizes all of our senses in
depicting the scenes, as it makes them all the more vivid
and memorable. SPLENDOUR FALLS is a beautifully written
tale that resonates with the reader long after the last page
has been turned.
An Ancient Castle, a Tragic Love, and a Web of
Secrets Begins to Unravel...
has stopped believing in fairy tales and happy endings. When
her fascinating but unreliable cousin Harry invites her on a
holiday to explore the legendary own of Chinon, and promptly
disappearsâ€”well, that's Harry for you.
As Emily makes
the acquaintance of Chinon and its people, she begins to
uncover dark secrets beneath the charm. Legend has it that
during a thirteenth-century siege of the castle that looms
over the city, Queen Isabelle, child bride of King John, hid
a "treasure of great price." And in the last days of the
German occupation during World War II, another Isabelle
living in Chinon, a girl whose love for an enemy soldier
went tragically awry.
As the dangers of the past
become disastrously real, Emily is drawn ever more deeply
into a labyrinth of mystery as twisted as the streets and
tunnels of the ancient town itself.