The Art of Inheriting Secrets: A Novel

January 6, 2020 - Comment

When Olivia Shaw’s mother dies, the sophisticated food editor is astonished to learn she’s inherited a centuries-old English estate—and a title to go with it. Raw with grief and reeling from the knowledge that her reserved mother hid something so momentous, Olivia leaves San Francisco and crosses the pond to unravel the mystery of a

When Olivia Shaw’s mother dies, the sophisticated food editor is astonished to learn she’s inherited a centuries-old English estate—and a title to go with it. Raw with grief and reeling from the knowledge that her reserved mother hid something so momentous, Olivia leaves San Francisco and crosses the pond to unravel the mystery of a lifetime.

One glance at the breathtaking Rosemere Priory and Olivia understands why the manor, magnificent even in disrepair, was the subject of her mother’s exquisite paintings. What she doesn’t understand is why her mother never mentioned it to her. As Olivia begins digging into her mother’s past, she discovers that the peeling wallpaper, debris-laden halls, and ceiling-high Elizabethan windows covered in lush green vines hide unimaginable secrets.

Although personal problems and her life back home beckon, Olivia finds herself falling for the charming English village and its residents. But before she can decide what Rosemere’s and her own future hold, Olivia must first untangle the secrets of her past.

Comments

Anonymous says:

A gorgeous story! So much to love about this book! I adored Olivia’s journey of discovery and rediscovery. The setting was amazing and evocative, the Priory so richly imagined I wished I could explore the rooms and the grounds myself. And the food! Indian food isn’t my go-to cuisine, but I loved learning more about it. O’Neal’s books always make me want to cook. However, my favorite thing about her work is the relationships. I love the way they develop, and I love the way they’re described. There’s always at…

Anonymous says:

Not her best work I always love Barbara O’Neal’s books because her Characters are lovable and believable. This time, however, I had trouble warming to her heroine, who seemed somewhat one-dimensional. Also, the details weren’t consistent. The character (who had recently broken her leg) went back and forth between limping so badly that she couldn’t climb stairs, even with her cane, to “dashing” in and out of shops and houses in the rain. I also got annoyed with some of the huge plot gaps and lack of resolution of…

Anonymous says:

Liked the characters Interesting but not unusual premise. Liked the characters, but the last 50 pages felt both rushed and inadequate. Two majors problems solved magically, heroine has no agency. A major issue (father?) never addressed. In retrospect, can’t understnad why her grief at losing mother wasn’t also matched by anger at secrets.

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