As a counselor, Sophia Barrett is trained to help people cope with their burdens. But when she meets a new patient whose troubles mirror her own, she realizes she hasn’t dealt with the pain of her recent past. After making a snap decision to get away for the summer, Sophia moves overseas to an apartment above a charming bookstore in Cornwall, England. She is hopeful she will find peace there surrounded by her favorite thing: great literature.
Bookstore owner Ginny Rose is desperate to save her business without asking for help from a husband who’s decided to take a break from their marriage. Ginny never imagined she’d be solely responsible for keeping afloat her husband’s dream, but the unexpected friendship with her new renter has her feeling more optimistic. Between the two of them—and Ginny’s brother-in-law, William—the bookstore might stand a chance.
Then Sophia finds a notebook in the bookstore that contains journal entries from Emily Fairfax, a governess who lived in Cornwall more than 150 years ago. Sophia learns that Emily harbored a secret passion for becoming an authoress—as well as a deep love for her childhood friend, Edward, whose station she dared not dream to touch.
Eager to know more of Emily’s story, Sophia goes on a quest—dragging Ginny and William with her—to discover the heart of the woman behind the beautiful entries. Soon Ginny’s need to save the bookstore becomes more than a way to save her marriage, and Sophia finds new purpose of her own. Together they find that sometimes both heartache and hope can reach across the centuries.
I wanted to read this book because so many people raved about the last one by Harrel, but I didn’t quite get into it. I thought I’d give it another shot with her newest release.
It’s a cute story, though it’s predictable. By the time you’ve read one chapter from each character POV, it’s pretty clear how the story will end (though it’s a happy ending, which I always prefer). I actually liked Emily’s story the best (I think because she dealt with her issues more quickly). It definitely makes me want to visit England again.
Overall, it was a fun story, it just didn’t particularly wow me. Nothing about it really stood out. It’s a book I’m happy to pass along to others though. If you’re a fan of contemporary Christian fiction like Rachel Hauck and Denise Hunter, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this book. Three out of five stars.
- I received a free copy of this book. My opinions are my own.