Sunday, July 12, 2015

Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor by Melanie Dobson #bookreview

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 Summer reading is in full swing in my house! I have a wonderful book Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor by Melanie Dobson to share with you today!  I loved this book so much that I read it in about 2 hours!  I couldn't put it down!

About the book:

When Heather Toulson returns to her parents' cottage in the English countryside, she uncovers long-hidden secrets about her family history and stumbles onto the truth about a sixty-year-old murder.

Libby, a free spirit who can't be tamed by her parents, finds solace with her neighbor Oliver, the son of Lord Croft of Ladenbrooke Manor. Libby finds herself pregnant and alone when her father kicks her out and Oliver mysteriously drowns in a nearby river. Though theories spread across the English countryside, no one is ever held responsible for Oliver's death.

Sixty years later, Heather Toulson, returning to her family's cottage in the shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor, is filled with mixed emotions. She's mourning her father's passing but can't let go of the anger and resentment over their strained relationship. Adding to her confusion, Heather has an uneasy reunion with her first love, all while sorting through her family's belongings left behind in the cottage. What she uncovers will change everything she thought she knew about her family's history.

My Thoughts:

This was a beautiful story of learning to love regardless of someones personality or past.  I love when a story unfolds by sharing a bit of the past while also being in the present.  Dobson seamlessly does that when she introduces us to Heather and we discover her parent's past along with her.  This book has mystery, mixed with the tiniest bit of romance.  Mostly though we learn to love a free-spirited child Libby and see the world from her eyes.  Autism is something near to me as I have relatives and friend with children on the spectrum.  It was clear from the beginning of the book that Libby was autistic.  It was interesting how the author showed the difference in today's way of thinking to years past.  In her author's note at the end she confirms this.  I have to admit I shed many tears while reading this one.  Not sure if I am just overly hormonal with this pregnancy... but I felt for the characters as they struggled to love and live their lives.  It was beautifully written and I can't wait to read another of Dobson's books!

You can purchase your copy of Shadows at Ladenbrooke Manor at your local book retailer or at online stores like Amazon.

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