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Ratings and Book Reviews (2 8 star ratings
2 reviews

Overall rating

4.8 out of 5
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  • 3 person found this review helpful

    3 people found this review helpful

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    Beautifully Written

    The Sea Gate is a superbly written story that follows the life of Becky, who suddenly finds herself headed to Cornwall. She must go to the aid of her hospital bound Aunt Olivia to help her save her home, Chynalls, a gorgeous but old and crumbling house that must be made habitable again, if Aunt Olivia is ever going to return there. During her time at Chynalls Becky will come to understand what really matters to her, and maybe even shed some of her demons. I could comfortably relate to the two protagonists Becky, narrating in the present and Olivia, in the past. Both of these characters were richly portrayed by Jane Johnson and each had lively, vivid personalities. I was quickly absorbed into the narrative, and I particularly appreciated the parts of the story detailing the mystery surrounding the house itself. The author's descriptive writing delightfully encapsulates the beauty and wildness of the locale, transporting the reader to a wonderfully idyllic setting. This was a poignant and thought provoking read that encompassed themes of injustice and prejudice in a quiet, unassuming way. Once I'd started reading I couldn't put this evocative tale down and I was never certain where Jane Johnson was going to take me next. The author wraps things up beautifully in a fulfilling and satisfying conclusion. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Head of Zeus via NetGalley and this review is my unbiased opinion.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    Engaging & Evocative!

    This is a wonderfully warm story with the past and present interwoven flawlessly, resulting in an engaging and evocative read. When Becky's mother dies suddenly, she has to take on the job of sorting through her effects and comes across a letter from her cousin, pleading for help. Without taking time to think, Becky races off to the Chynalls - the home on the Cornish coast which she vaguely remembers from her childhood. With cousin Olivia stuck in hospital until certain renovations are made to the ancient house, Becky agrees to take charge and deal with it all, but gets much more than she bargained for . . . What a fabulously created novel! The cleverly crafted story had me fully invested very quickly and I was eager to find out what happened next. With romance, history and mystery all easily intertwined, the narrative flows smoothly and makes for a very rewarding read. With a cast of varied characters, there is never a dull moment and I flew through the pages, looking forward to finding out what came next both in Becky's story and, of course, Olivia's - and what an amazing life the latter had! I have been riveted throughout and adored all the quirky details of the house. A fitting conclusion to a book which I feel I have more absorbed than read, and am very happy to give 4.5*.

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