This was my first Susanna Kearsley book. I'm a huge fan of gothic novels, everything from Jane Eyre to Mary Stewart, so I was looking forward to a new author. I give it mixed reviews - probably closer to 3.5 stars for me, but I wasn't feeling generous to bump my rating up to 4.
This book was written in 1994, and it does feel that way in sections. The main character Julia, is traveling back to the past in her mind - could she be seeing a past life? I remember reading a lot of books at that time that dealt with reincarnation in a very overt way. The lack of cell phones etc also felt odd to the modern eye, as whole plotlines revolved around waiting for phone calls.
I sort of had a problem with the ending. I did not like the way it attempted to give 2 plot twists in the last 4 pages. I had seen the reveal about her love interest coming, but it was very abrupt. There should have been at least a little foreshadowing that this was a love triangle
. Instead, I felt that Julia wasn't interested in Iain at all, only to recognize his soul or something. Bah. It didn't work for me at all. I also didn't buy Vivian's relationship with Julia's brother, which I think should have been foreshadowed a little bit more. Also, what about poor Geoff? I wanted to find out what happened there.
Having said that, I am totally going to read more of Kearsley's books. I think this one aged poorly, but the overall gothic feel was excellent.