The outstanding new novel from the Sunday Times Top Ten bestselling author of The Garden of Lost and Found.
Catherine, a successful barrister, vanishes from a train station on the eve of her anniversary. Is it because she saw a figure – someone she believed long dead? Or was it a shadow cast by her troubled, fractured mind? The answer lies buried in the past. It lies in the events of the hot, seismic summer of 1989, at Vanes – a mysterious West Country manor house – where a young girl, Jane Lestrange, arrives to stay with the gilded, grand Hunter family, and where a devastating tragedy will unfold. Over the summer, as an ancient family ritual looms closer, Janey falls for each member of the family in turn. She and Kitty, the eldest daughter of the house, will forge a bond that decades later, is still shaping the present . . .
A gorgeous epic . . . Wholly absorbing. I adored it’ MARIAN KEYES
‘This sweeping, absorbing story is a treat’ ADELE PARKS
‘A compelling story of female friendship, dark secrets and family bonds that pulls you in and won’t let go’ ROSANNA LEY
‘If you love atmospheric stories about old houses, families and secrets, this is for you’ GOOD HOUSEKEEPING
‘A gorgeous story to get immersed in’ Prima
A mysterious house, a disappearance and a compelling mystery – these are some of the many reasons that I was so drawn to The Beloved Girls and why I’m so grateful to Anne Cater from #RandomThings Tours for inviting me to participate in this blog tour.
I love immersing myself in a fabulous historical read and the setting here was one of the most memorable aspects of The Beloved Girls as I really felt like I could imagine myself there at Vanes with Janey and explore its hidden pathways and mysteries for myself.
Is anyone else like me and love to go online and look for settings of the book that they’re loving, to try and see its world come to life? I love doing it and I found myself scrolling through pages and pages of gorgeous houses, trying to walk in both Janey and Kitty’s shoes.
It was lovely to lose myself in a fantastic historical read after eight weeks of the Summer holidays where I’ve been mostly reading contemporary writing and non-fiction. It’s funny that I get drawn to books in waves, and after reading The Beloved Girls I’m now on a real Historical Fiction mission and am set on re-reading lots of novels set in big houses with stunning gardens and family secrets as well.
The closed and mysterious world of Vanes was so intriguing and really allowed me to travel back in time through its pages. I really loved the way that Harriet Evans draws the reader in and keeps them guessing about the mystery surrounding the disappearance of Catherine and the secrets of the past that we begin to uncover and this made me turn the pages rapidly as I sought to uncover the mysteries of the past for myself. I found myself wondering about whaand what Catherine really saw and her story felt so real to me that I could almost imagine the people in it coming to life…
I loved the juxtaposition of Janey’s relationship with the glamorous Hunter family through the years, especially her obsession with Kitty The deftly portrayed relationship between them lures you in and you are soon caught up in a mermerising tale where everything is not as it seems on the surface and ancient rituals and ceremonies chime unnervingly with the fates that are to unfold in the not too distant future. If you love an epic read, with credible and compelling characters then you’ll really love The Beloved Girls – I was a huge fan growing up of my mum’s Rosamund Pilcher novels and this novel reminded me so much of her immersive tales of history, intrigue and family secrets.
I absolutely loved this book enjoyed the fact that I was on holiday and could really dedicate some serious hours of reading to this unforgettable tale I enjoyed the feeling of being immersed in this world where hidden secrets and unspoken thoughts tug away at your subconscious. I got so lost in this story that I stayed up far too late to finish it as I could not go to sleep without finishing it and immediately wanted my sister to read it too so we could have a long catch-up Marian Keyes loved it too – so what higher recommendation should you wish for ? Harriet Evans is probably one of my favourite writers of historical fiction and I can’t wait to see what she does next as in my eyes she can do no wrong.
Two, two, the beloved girls,
Clothed all in green, O,
One is one and all alone, and evermore shall be so