"For the frazzled Anglophile, the countryside-enamored reader, here's a bit of romance, light mystery, and the reassuring stability of a timeless English villagein short, another Stewart comforter. . . . Soothing as a warm brew on a cold night are Stewart's satisfying denouementsand environs." —Kirkus Reviews
Rose Cottageby Mary Stewart
Rose Cottage, a tiny thatched dwelling in an idyllic English country setting, would appear the picture of tranquility to any passerby. But when Kate Herrick returns to her childhood home to retrieve some family papers in the summer of 1947, she uncovers a web of intrigue as tangled as the rambling roses in its garden. The papers are missing. The village is alive… See more details below
Rose Cottage, a tiny thatched dwelling in an idyllic English country setting, would appear the picture of tranquility to any passerby. But when Kate Herrick returns to her childhood home to retrieve some family papers in the summer of 1947, she uncovers a web of intrigue as tangled as the rambling roses in its garden. The papers are missing. The village is alive with gossip. Did her elderly neighbors, suspected of being witches, really see nighttime prowlers and ghosts in the cottage garden?
Kate's search for the truth brings her together with many childhood friends and neighbors, some suspicious of her return, but most eager to help. It also leads her down a trail of family bitterness, jealousy, and revengeand into an exploration of her own past. She ends up discovering a long-hidden secret that will change her life dramaticallyalong with romance in a place she least expects.
First published in 1997 and a major bestseller, Rose Cottage is, to date, the last and most mature novel from one of Britain's greatest writers.
Here, a young widow returns in 1947 to her childhood home and the enigma of her parentage. Kate Herrick, née Welland, who lost her husband in the war, is summoned to Scotland by her beloved grandmother, formerly a cook in the household of Sir James Brandon. She asks Kate to return to their native village in the north of England, where Kate was raised by Gran and severe Aunt Betsy. Kate's mother Lilias, who'd become pregnant while serving at the Brandons' estate, had left Kate at six, never to return. Gran had told Kate that she had "gone with the gipsies," but some years later Kate learned that her mother and new husband had been killed in Ireland in a bus accident. Now, Kate is to come again to Gran's Rose Cottage, long shuttered, charged with shipping some of Gran's belongings to her in Scotland and with locating a neatly hidden safe containing family items of sentimental value. But someone has broken into the cottage, ripped out the safe, and removed its contents. Then there are strange rumors of odd appearances, generated mainly by the "Witches Corner"comprised of two gossipy ladies, as well as a feathery individual who's sure she has "the sight" and has seen a dead woman digging in the cottage yard and piling flowers on the grave of mean Aunt Betsy. With the help of young Davey, son of old family friends, and scraps of information from neighbors, Kate will at last discover an absent mother and a name for an unknown father.
Soothing as a warm brew on a cold night are Stewart's satisfying denouementsand environs: ". . . willows and wild roses, cuckoo-pint and king cups, and a wood pigeon crooning in the elm." Mild doings in enchanting surroundings.
Meet the Author
Mary Stewart has published 20 novels, including the Merlin trilogy (The Crystal Cave, The Hollow Hills, and The Last Enchantment), Nine Coaches Waiting, The Ivy Tree, Thornyhold, The Moon-Spinners, and My Brother Michael.
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I read this many years ago & dearly loved it. Sad to see that her classics aren't on nook, though.
This is a lovely nostalgia piece. Having grown up with Mary Stewart, I was delighted to see this title that was new to me. For all of you who love the community feel of small villages, this story will warm your heart!