Book Reviews,  Historical Fiction,  Romance

Book Review: The Secrets of Elloughton Park

The Secrets of Elloughton ParkThe Secrets of Elloughton Park by Stephen Taylor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

James Postlethwaite acquires a stash of journals long-forgotten in the attic of a stately Georgian home. He enlists Grace, one of his undergraduate students, to help him read and research the journals. The journal entries, written in the late 1700s are all meticulously dated. It’s decided that they will read the journals of well-to-do gentleman Corbyn Carlisle, and a lowly orphaned cindermaid named Ginny Farmer, concurrently.

As the historian and the student read about the lives and fortunes of Corbyn and Ginny, they become entranced and immersed in the joys, sorrows, and complications of daily life in the Georgian era. The journals are compelling, soul-baring glimpses into Corbyn’s and Ginny’s hearts.

As time goes on, their fortunes change, and so do their entries. Ginny’s journals start out with heaps of misspellings and poor grammar. Over time, as she pulls herself up from the bottom rung of the social ladder, her life improves and so does her writing. James and Grace are mesmerized by the journals and what’s being revealed – but is that a good thing?

Ideally, this book should be read while propped up on a pile of pillows, under an afghan, with hot tea close at hand. Turn down the lights and soften the glow from your Kindle. Pretend you’re in that Georgian attic, holding the stained, crumbling pages of Corbyn and Ginny’s journals. Let yourself be pulled in. I found this book to be highly satisfying in so many ways. I highly recommend it.

My thanks to author Stephen Taylor and Sapere Books for allowing me to read a digital advance review copy of this book. This review is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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Lori Alden Holuta lives between the cornfields of Mid-Michigan, where she grows vegetables and herbs when she’s not writing, editing, or playing games with a cat named Chives.

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