19 May 2021
Heaven's Cove #2
My thanks to the publishers for my copy of this book
High on the clifftops, Lettie takes a deep breath of salty air and opens the letter. There is no signature, and the old-fashioned handwriting is faint against the yellowed paper. The message, and the tiny gold key inside, will turn her life upside down…
Lettie Starcross makes her way along the cobbled streets of Heaven’s Cove, clutching a little key and searching for answers about her kind, twinkly-eyed Great Aunt Iris, whom she misses terribly. With no job back home, and no-one in her family understanding how adrift she feels, Lettie wonders if her aunt was lonely just like her – is that why she fled this pretty seaside village years ago and never returned?
Staying at Driftwood House where Iris lived, now a cosy B&B, Lettie can almost hear Iris’s laughter on the breeze. And when she locks eyes with brooding fisherman Corey as he’s singing a haunting sea shanty in the local tavern, the sparks that fly between them are a welcome distraction from her grief.
But everything changes when Lettie meets Corey’s grandmother. Hearing the name ‘Iris Starcross’, her wrinkled face turns pale. Then she tells Lettie a devastating secret: seventy years ago, a choice Iris made tore apart this tight-knit community.
Heartbroken, Lettie questions if she ever really understood her beloved aunt – and if Corey knew about this shocking rift all along. So when her sister calls begging her to come home, Lettie is torn. If she stays to find what the key unlocks, can she discover the truth about what Iris did – and fight for her own fresh start? Or will she be the next Starcross woman to run from Heaven’s Cove forever?
📖 My thoughts..
When Lettie Starcross arrives in the pretty coastal village of Heaven's Cove she is grieving for the loss of her beloved great-aunt and looking for answers as to why Great-aunt Iris left Heaven's Cove seventy years ago, never to return.
What then follows is a very welcome return visit back to this little corner of Devon which we were first introduced to in Secrets of the Last House before the Sea. Driftwood House is, once again, very much a character in the story and I enjoyed going back to see what changes Rosie had made in the running of her guest house.
The secret at the heart of the story has much to offer and as long held resentments and old dramas come to the surface so Lettie starts to have a different view of her great-aunt and the reasons why she left Heaven's Cove all those years ago. Of course, Lettie's search for the truth is not without difficulty but her resilient nature shines through especially in her altercations with the enigmatic, bur rather handsome, Corey. It also opens up emotional flaws in Lettie's personal life and causes her to question her own relationships with her rather needy family.
It's been an absolute pleasure to be back in Heaven's Cove again. The author brings so much warmth and empathy to the stories that it's very easy to get lost in time and imagine yourself walking down the hill from Driftwood House into the village. The characters come alive, I especially enjoyed getting to know the new characters whilst being happy to be reacquainted with some of the more eccentric villagers.
The author writes this gentle drama with a fine eye for detail and a wonderful sense of bringing everything to completion. Whilst it is perfectly possible to read the story as a standalone, of course. it does help a little if you have visited Heaven's Cove before if only to enjoy meeting up again with a few old friends.
A Letter to the Last House before the Sea is every bit as good as I knew it would be and I hope to be back again soon in Heaven's Cove.
About the Author
Liz Eeles lives on the south coast of England with her family, and writes heart-warming, emotional women's fiction and romantic comedies.
Twitter @lizeelesauthor #ALettertotheLastHousebeforetheSea