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Summary

On holiday with friends, young historian Briony Andrews becomes fascinated with a wartime story of a ruined villa in the hills behind Naples. 

Briony’s grandfather had been a British soldier during the Italian campaign of 1943 in that very area. Handed a bundle of letters that were found after the war, Briony sets off to trace the fate of their sender, Sarah Bailey. As Briony begins to uncover the story, she encounters resentments and secrets still tightly guarded.

©2018 Rachel Hore (P)2018 W. F. Howes Ltd

What members say

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Not bad but probably won't return to it.

The story sparked my interest and kept me listening however it was Sarah and Paul's timeline that I was keen to hear about. Bryony who is supposedly a 30 something with a history doctorate was a weak character in my view. She was immature, unworldly and needy. Her journey saw her improve slightly but compared to Sarah and Paul who were younger and living in a time of war I was left feeling she needed to buck up and grow up. There is a sickly love story in the modern timeline which was expected and totally obvious. The male characters in the modern time line also felt a bit "chick lit" to me, not well rounded and more than a bit cheesy.
I have to add this is not my usual listen but that I was stuck for something and thought I would plump for a different style of book. As I said I got to the end, I wanted to know how it all finished off but I won't return to it and am not tempted to listen to anything else by this author as her style just isn't for me.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Way too many characters

Even tho I read this book to the end, unfortunately it was one of the very few books that I didn’t enjoy. There were way too many characters and it was very difficult to keep track of who everyone was as there were a lot of characters in the past and the present. The narration was fabulous, Jenny Funnell really as an art of bringing characters to life. Overall, not a great read

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good story ... but a little over long

I really enjoyed the story overall, but the chapters detailing the war part did end up being very long and laborious - would have been better to have focused on the present day characters a little more. Beautifully read but just a tad too long.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Disappointing

This was my first Rachel Hore book and it has not encouraged me to read more of hers. I love stories told over two time periods where a secret unfolds but this one failed to deliver.
The book felt too long and the story is told in so much laborious detail that it feels tedious and there was not enough intrigue to keep my interest. I struggled to finish it and was glad when it was done . The narration was good although I found the German accent a little forced. If you are looking for this genre of book I would recommend The Letter by Kathyn Hughes which is a far better read.