A Secret Rose is the latest timeslip novel from Kirsty Ferry and is set in a beautiful old house in Cornwall. Merryn has travelled from London to help value the art collection at Pencradoc. There is a possibility that she might discover some long lost, very valuable art and she is very excited to get started on looking at the paintings. When she meets one of the brothers who own Pencradoc, Kit Penhaligon, she feels an instant connection to him, a feeling that they have met before – and he has the same unnerving feeling…
I have to admit that I was slightly confused initially about which characters were which as the story moved from past to present. However, as I settled into the story, I got my head around who was from the strand in the past and who were the contemporary characters. There is a really close connection between the characters in both parts of the story with present day characters channelling those from the past. I had a strong sense that past and present were at touching point throughout the book. The past is not a benevolent force in this book but poses a real threat.
There was lots of intrigue all through the story – what had happened to Rose, what happened between the brothers Ellory and Jago in the past, what was the cause of tension between Kit and Coren in the present day? I was quite chuffed with myself to spot that there were similarities with Robert Browning’s poem, My Last Duchess. My daughter studied this for her English Higher exam last year so I got to know it quite well too! The themes of the jealous husband, the beautiful wife, the artist in love and the danger posed are all reflected in this story.
A Secret Rose is a much darker read than I have come to expect from this author. Although, being a ChocLit novel romance (both in the past and the present) is a central part of the story, there is also real danger and some rather dramatic scenes near the end of this book. With sibling rivalry, jealousy, ghostly goings-on, a gorgeous Cornish setting and plenty of romance, A Secret Rose is an intriguing and enjoyable read from Kirsty Ferry.
My thanks to Liz at ChocLit for my review copy of this book. A Secret Rose is available now as an ebook. You will find buying links for various readers on the publisher’s website here: A Secret Rose
From the back of the book
“Wherever you go, I will follow …”
Merryn Burton is excited to travel down to Cornwall to start her first big job for the London art dealers she works for. But as soon as she arrives at Pencradoc, a beautiful old mansion, she realises this will be no ordinary commission.
Not only is Pencradoc filled with fascinating, and possibly valuable artwork, it is also owned by the Penhaligon brothers – and Merryn’s instant connection with Kit Penhaligon could be another reason why her trip suddenly becomes a whole lot more interesting.
But the longer Merryn stays at Pencradoc the more obvious it is that the house has a secret, and a long-forgotten Rose might just hold the key …
About the author
Kirsty is from the North East of England and won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition in 2009 with the ghostly tale ‘Enchantment’.
Her timeslip novel, ‘Some Veil Did Fall’, a paranormal romance set in Whitby, was published by Choc Lit in Autumn 2014. This was followed by another Choc Lit timeslip, ‘The Girl in the Painting’ in February 2016. ‘The Girl in the Photograph’, published in March 2017, completes the Rossetti Mysteries series. The experience of signing ‘Some Veil Did Fall’ in a quirky bookshop in the midst of Goth Weekend in Whitby, dressed as a recently undead person was one of the highlights of her writing career so far!
Kirsty’s first timeslip novel ‘The Memory of Snow’, commended in the Northern Writers’ Awards, is set on Hadrian’s Wall, with the vampire tale ‘Refuge’ set on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne. She has also put together a collection of short stories, a non-fiction collection of articles and writes Gothic Fiction under the pen name Cathryn Ramsay.
Kirsty has had articles and short stories published in Your Cat, Peoples Friend, Ghost Voices, The Weekly News and It’s Fate, and her short stories appear in several anthologies. She was a judge in the Paws ‘n’ Claws ‘Wild and Free’ Children’s Story competition in 2011, 2013 and 2014, and graduated from Northumbria University in December 2016, having achieved a Masters with Distinction in Creative Writing.
You can find out more about Kirsty and her work at http://www.rosethornpress.co.uk, catch her on her Facebook AuthorPage, follow her on Twitter @kirsty_ferry or pop by her blog at http://www.rosethornramblings.wordpress.com.