Friday, February 19, 2021

The Letter by Ruth Saberton


This book has been on my Kindle for some time and I finally decided to give it a chance.  The setting is Cornwall and that was probably the biggest selling point for me when I purchased it.  There are two story lines here, one set in current  times and the other a romantic mystery set in 1914.

First we meet Chloe Pencarrow, a widow of two years who has moved from London to Cornwall, hoping to get away from the constant memories of her deceased husband Neil.  It's well established that Chloe is still deeply grieving for her husband who died from cancer at age 32.  

Chloe is an artist and teacher but she has put her love to paint on hold these past two years.  When she moves to Cornwall and away from looks of pity and unsolicited advice from her mother she finally has a chance to breathe.

Matthew  Enys is a historian and huge fan of the Cornwall poet Christopher "Kit" Rivers. Matt is doing restoration work at Rosecraddick manor, trying to salvage a part of Kit's life and perhaps bring his poetry to the attention and distinction of other famous war poets.  Kit's image is imortalized in a stain glassed window in the church.  Little is known about his life other than he was heir to a Rosecraddick manor and surrounding lands, a very upper class family yet a very down to earth young man. 

Chloe, with her eye for artistic detail, notices a daisy in the stained glass, something so glaringly out of place that it has to represent something very important about Kit. As she helps Matthew go through old documments and treasures she accidently stumbles upon a great clue.  In her rental there is an old floorboard which was a hiding place.  Chloe pries it up and finds a diary and letters in an old biscuit tin.  At this point in the novel we land in 1914 before the first world war.

The story of Daisy and Kit 

It's 1914. A young woman named Daisy was sent to Cornwall for health reasons.  She was visiting her godfather in Cornwall when she and Kit meet unexpectantly at the beach. They end up getting better acquainted, have a whirlwind romance and their dedication to one another was almost too much.

They keep their relationship secret, planning on spending their lives together once Kit can speak to his class conscious parents. When the war begins Kit does what every young man did then, he enlists. It was necessary to overdo the romantic dedication here, in my opinion, so you can keenly feel the loss of young women who lose their fiances and husbands. The novel then leaps back to the present day and you can see the mystery of Kit and Daisy from an entirely new perspective.

This book addresses PTSD and the consequences for those who are battle scarred physically and mentally. It addresses grieving from the families in the 1914 era and also Chloe's grief over losing her husband to cancer at a young age.

I would certainly read more by this author and I found the book very engaging.

Sharing with Joy's Book blog for British Isles Friday and Marg at The Intrepid Reader for the 2021 Historical Ficion Challenge.


  1. This sounds like a good one! Glad you were able to find time for it. I hope the rest of her books are just as good. Thanks for sharing. I hope you have a lovely week.

    1. Thanks, Heather. I am definitely adding this author to my to-read list.

  2. That does sound good -- and cover is gorgeous!


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