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The Island House: A Novel

The Island House: A Novel

3.5 6
by Posie Graeme-Evans

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From the internationally bestselling author of The Dressmaker comes an unforgettable novel about a young archaeologist who unearths ancient secrets, a tragic romance, and Viking treasure on a remote Scottish island.

One warm, rainy summer, Freya Dane, a PhD candidate in archaeology, arrives on the ancient Scottish island of Findnar. Estranged as


From the internationally bestselling author of The Dressmaker comes an unforgettable novel about a young archaeologist who unearths ancient secrets, a tragic romance, and Viking treasure on a remote Scottish island.

One warm, rainy summer, Freya Dane, a PhD candidate in archaeology, arrives on the ancient Scottish island of Findnar. Estranged as a child from her recently dead father, himself an archaeologist, Freya yearns to understand more about the man, his work on the island, and why he left her mother so many years ago. It seems Michael Dane uncovered much of Findnar’s Viking and Christian past through his search for an illusive tomb, and Freya continues his work. The discoveries she is destined to make, far greater than her father’s, will teach her the true meaning of love and of loss.

AD 800, and a wandering comet, an omen of evil, shines down on Findnar. The fears of the locals are justified. In a Viking raid, Signy, a Pictish girl, loses her entire family. Taken in by survivors of the island’s Christian community, she falls in love with an injured Viking youth left behind by the raiders and is cast out. Confused and bereft, eventually she becomes a nun, a decision that will unleash tragedy as she is plunged into the heart of a war between three religions. Forced to choose among her ancestors’ animist beliefs, her adopted faith, and the man she loves, Signy will call out to Freya across the centuries. Ancient wrongs must be laid to rest in the present and the mystery at the heart of Findnar’s violent past exposed.

In time the comet will return, a link between past and present. But for these two women, time does not exist. For them, the past will never die. It has waited for them both.

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Atria Books
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Meet the Author

Posie Graeme-Evans is the author of five novels, most recently The Island House. She has worked in the Australian film and television industry for the last thirty years as an editor, director, and producer on hundreds of primetime television programs, including "McLeod's Daughters" and "Hi-5." She lives in Tasmania with her husband and creative partner, Andrew Blaxland. Visit her website at www.posiegraemeevans.com.

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The Island House 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
BabycakesGO More than 1 year ago
This book had a very slow start and it was diffuclt to get interested in the characters. Not the best by this author for sure and I hate to give her a bad review because I have enjoyed her previous writing. Nothing really seemed to come together. We know there was a conneciton between Signy and Freya but it was never properly developed. Nor was the connection between Dan and the past. This seemed like a poor imitation of a Susanna Kearsley book. I was so glad when I finished it.
Sue_G More than 1 year ago
This book  was intriguing from the first page.  Anyone who loves reading about ancient history, archaeology, Scottish history, and  a bit of paranormal tossed in will love this.  Fans of Susannah Kearsley and Barbara Erskine--you must read this!  One of my favorite books of 2012.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book sounded intriguing, the premise held great promise.  However, the actual bones of the story did not support the potential.  This was a plodding read that could have been edited to hold the reader's interest.  It's hard to explain what went wrong with this novel: it was longer than necessary, sentence structures were odd in places leaving the reader puzzling over what the author was trying to convey.  The characters were one-dimensional and the main character, Freya, was not likeable.  As an avid reader that can get through a book in a day or so, this book was a struggle.  It just fell flat, no spark.
SilversReviews More than 1 year ago
Singy and Freya are living parallel lives on the Scottish Island of Findnar, but during different times in history. Singy lived on Findnar during the time of a Viking raid where her entire family was murdered and Freya living in present day came from Australia to her dead father's Island House to finish her PhD in archaeology and to complete his research and to find the many historical, hidden treasures on Findnar. It was exciting to be with Freya as she uncovered items noted on her father's research cards and items that had been used and left by Singy when she had lived on the island. On the other hand, it was heartbreaking to see the harsh life Singy had lived with the nuns and monks. Ms. Graeme-Evans did an outstanding job of blending the two stories together. When Freya discovers something from Singy's era, you will be excited because you actually know the real story of the find and want to let Freya know. History buffs will go crazy with the archeological finds Freya uncovers. The author described the two main characters in detail and as equivalent to each other with their likeness being the island they lived on and the people in their lives. There is even a parallel between their two love stories. The secondary characters are just as fascinating and are vital to the book's awe and storyline and are appealing in terms of their uniqueness. The cover in itself is intriguing, and once I started reading, it was easy to get absorbed. The storyline and writing style are perfect in all respects, and the lives of Singy and Freya keep you looking for more. The interesting detail on the author’s part and such a marvelous blending of the two eras along with the flawless, captivating storyline that moved from one era to the next will keep you turning the pages and wanting to see more of what was to come. As the chapters flowed from one character and one era to the other, you will see the similarities in the setting and lifestyle, but of course one is more primitive than the other. I loved how the ending sentence or simply one single word of a chapter was the beginning of the other era in the next chapter. What a beautiful writing style as well as a magnificent book. Don’t miss this exceptional read that brought past and present together in an unforgettable tale of love, loss, hidden treasures, and discovery. Ms. Graeme-Evans did a remarkable job in this compelling read that will be in my list of favorites because of the history, the mystery, and the added flare of Scotland's magic and its legends and myths. 5/5 I received a free copy of this book from Simon & Schuster in return for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you enjoyed The Forgotten Garden you will enjoy this as well!