The Orchid House

The Orchid House

by Lucinda Riley
4.0 65

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The Orchid House 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 65 reviews.
Lily-loo More than 1 year ago
There just isn't anything bad I could say about 'The Orchid House'. As a reader, I was sent on a wonderful journey of discovery with dark secrets and many twists. I don't want to give any of the story away, however, I will say that the main setting is Wharton Park, a large estate which has been in the family for centuries. In the present, the estate has been left to Kit Crawford but unfortunately has to sell it as the expense is too high to keep it. In the past, Wharton Park is at the centre of Harry and Olivia's relationship, pulled through the 2nd World War and and its future is changed for ever. This is a story of love, hope and what the war did to Wharton Park and its residents. It resembles Downton Abbey which is probably why I loved it so much. You must read this!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Many twists and turns. Some parts I wish the main character had made different decisions but overall good book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book! Too wordy in the middle, but really worth the read. Quite a surprise near the end.
elbell More than 1 year ago
Great Book and something that I have not done in a long time, read through and not put down. At times seemed a bit slow, but the secrets were throught provoking and kept you guessing. Recommend for someone who likes family sagas and things that resonate throught the years.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel truly took you back to the days of WW II. The characters were well developed and the story was very believable. I would highly recommend this novel for someone who likes to sit back on a rainy afternoon and immerse themselves in another time and other people's lives.
capeto2 More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book, couldn't put it down! I highly recommend it, especially if you like historical fiction. And just when you think you have it all figured out, the author throws in a plot twist that keeps you wanting more. I was looking for an author that would compare to Kate Morton. If you like Kate Morton books you will love this book!
Kimberly_Book_Addict More than 1 year ago
Every so often a book comes along that is so lyrically and beautifully written, that it changes you a bit. The Orchid House by Lucinda Riley is one of those novels. Taking the reader on an unforgettable journey through England, Thailand, and France, The Orchid House will make readers question how far they’d be willing to go for true love. World renowned pianist Julia Forrester has returned to her home in England to mourn the loss of her young son and husband in a tragic car accident. While home she visits Wharton Park, the estate in which her grandparents worked as servants in the 1930′s. While visiting, she is reintroduced to Kit Crawford, the current Lord of the manor, and long ago childhood friend. During Kit’s renovations of her grandparents cottage on the estate, he finds a diary that chronicles time spent in the Changi POW camp in Singapore during World War II. When Julia approaches her grandmother to find out whether or not the diary belonged to her grandfather, she is treated to a tale of love, betrayal, deceit, and loss that in its own way helps to begin her own healing process. We come to find out the diary belongs to Harry Crawford, former heir to Wharton Park. Julia’s grandmother tells her his story, stuck in a world of responsibility and expectations that he never wanted to be a part of. Throw into this his wife Olivia and her unfortunate plight of being married to a man who doesn’t love her, as well as Lydia, the beguiling woman he meets in Thailand, and you’re in for the story of a lifetime. I’m completely blown away that this is Riley’s debut novel. Her writing is so fluid and beautiful that it reads like the work of a seasoned author. She intricately and expertly weaves a plot filled with mystery and intrigue over three generations. She unveils secret after secret in perfect succession, adding to the stratagem of her storytelling. Riley’s characters are mesmerizing and captivating and are each put through their own form of hell to test what they are truly able to face. Not everyone is given happy endings, which adds a realistic feel to the story. As I said earlier, The Orchid House will definitely question how much you would be willing to give up for the love of a lifetime. Not only that, but how far and how long does the feeling of true love last in the face of a lifetime of despair? The Orchid House’s main heroine Julia is one of the most relatable characters I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading. Her life has been filled with many tragedies that she’s let cast shadows on the relationships she holds with her family. She’s also allowed the recent tragedies of her husband and young son’s deaths darken her life into one that she doesn’t think is worth living. She lives in a constant state of pause – not moving forward, not moving backward. It’s a state that most who have lost love ones can relate too. Not only this, but she feels guilt at the thought of moving forward and at loving and living again. Julia’s story has made me realize (more than I already did) that life is precious, a gift that can be taken away at any time. Not only has Julia’s story taught me this, but Lidia’s, Harry’s, and Olivia’s stories as well, all speak to this simple teaching. I cannot recommend this book enough, especially for fans of the hauntingly beautiful gothic writing styles of Kate Morton’s The House at Riverton, Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, and Rachel Hore’s A Gathering Storm. (Reflections of a Book Addict)
midsummermaven More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this past and present revolving story with it's fairytale opening about the Prince of Siam, and its belief in the power of love. Author Lucinda Riley does a great job of leading us, and our present day protagonist Julia Forrester, a famous concert pianist, on a journey through past and present to discover just how powerful love really is. The book begins with Julia dealing with her own demons, unable to play piano because of a recent personal tragedy. We see Julia pushing family and friends aside to the extreme and only a trip to Wharton Park Estate, now set for an estate sale, sparks any kind of life in the listless Julia. Julia fondly remembers the estate as a peaceful place where her grandparents worked as servants, tending the exqusite gardens and which she often visted as a child. Here is where she runs into Kit Crawford,a cousin who is the living heir to the estate and someone Julia remembered from her childhood. A friendship begins when the two are reuinted. Kit unable to finance the large estate is staying at The Cottage, Julia's grandparents old home. In the process of doing some remodeling, he discovers the diary of a POW in Thailand from WWII hidden in the cottage. Believing it to be the diary of Julia's grandfather he gives it to her, only to discover it was Lord Harry Crawford's. As Julia begins to read the dairy we the reader are transported back in time and the historical fiction storylines are so good, I can't spoil them here. An array of characters Olivia, Harry, Elsie, Bill and more come to life and I for one couldn't be happier. Fans of Downton Abbey this is for you. Book clubs.... put this one on your list! flag
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is contrived and disappointing. I managed to get through half of it before I decided I had to stop reading because I felt like I was getting dumber.
djintx More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. Orchids, travel, life, death, and love....and a surprise ending. I couldn't put it down. Highly recommend!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Characters were not interesting and seemed unnatural in there reactions. Some gushy dialog just did not ring true. Glsd to be finished with story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book started off a little slowly, but then picked up very nicely. I thought it was very well written, with lots of intertwining plots and characters. I especially liked the parts that were in Thailand. I felt like I was right there with the characters. It had a wonderfully, rich feel to it and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Would highly recommend it to anyone.
MKMar More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed "The Orchid House". The characters were interesting and I especially liked the flash backs to another era.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story is intriguing. However, I found myself scanning through the uninspired and often sophomoric writing to see what happened in the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hated this book. It is a romance novel trying to pass itself off as historical fiction. It was a book club pick that I could barely get through, so I skimmed the last half. The plot was predictable and I had it completely figured out. Ick, ick and ick.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Beautiful story. Well written good read!
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NJ94 More than 1 year ago
This was an awesome read! I was immersed in the story of Kit & Julia! I could even picture myself at Wharton Park & in Thailand as their story unfolded! I loved the way the author weaved this story in with the past. The story itself kept me on my toes which is admittedly a hard thing to do. I could feel the anger, love, sadness & forgiveness of the characters. Amazing read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This books spans many generations. It's about healing the deepest heartache and growing from it. Uplifting and interesting.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very predictable and unrealistic.