The Winter Garden by Nicola Cornick is a marvellous dual timeline novel that had me enthralled from the start.
The book is set in present day and 1598 in the lead up to the Gunpowder Plot. Chapters alternate, as do the voices, with the action being seen through the eyes of the leading ladies – in the third person in present day and in the first person in 1598.
Living in a barn called Gunpowder Barn in the grounds of the old Catesby cottage provides a link to the past. It is all very atmospheric as there seems to be a thin veil between the two time periods.
We witness that sadness in the present attracts sadness in the past. A love will not rest until the past has surrendered its secrets.
A mother’s love is strong. We witness several instances. Life in the sixteenth century was precarious, not all children born, survived. A veil of grief is palpable.
One True North
The Last Daughter by Nicola Cornick is a fabulous dual timeline novel that blends fact and fiction. The reader is educated about the period surrounding Richard III and Minster Lovell in Oxfordshire.
The action is set in the fifteenth century and present day in alternating chapters. There is an age-old mystery concerning the lost lodestar which is the source of legends and tales.
In present day a family is still reeling from the disappearance of a daughter eleven years earlier. “A part of her was still trapped in the moment of Caitlin’s disappearance.” Where there are no answers and no closure it is impossible to move forward.
An archeological dig makes a surprising discovery that throws up more questions than answers.
The Forgotten Sister by Nicola Cornick is a marvellous time-slip novel that has its roots in fact. The story has two time periods – 1550’s and present day. Actual historical figures are within the tale including Elizabeth I and Robert Dudley. They were both familiar to me as a historian.
The novel is an exciting read as both stories run parallel, causing the reader to read with heart racing. As the action flows, we are powerless to prevent the conclusion.
I loved the characters. They were well drawn and realistic. The leading ladies were very likable and easy to empathise with. A couple of characters elicited feelings of dislike as my emotions were guided by the pen of Nicola Cornick.
I was familiar with many of the locations. It gave me a thrill to read of Hales Owen in Worcestershire, as we actually go to Lifecentral, a church in Halesowen.
A Love Through Time
House Of Shadows by Nicola Cornick is a fascinating
and compulsive contemporary and historical read. Fact and fiction combine under
the author’s skilful imagination.
The novel is mainly set in present day but
travels back to the late seventeenth century and the early nineteenth century.
It is an epic tale of myths, love, curses and ancient artefacts which wield
their power. The reader is enthralled as we try to predict the action.
There are missing persons to be found in the
past and present – men who disappeared leaving no trace.
A great love travels down the ages. It is a
love that refuses to die but is continually reborn.