I was finally able to read this book Friday night (I finished it at 2 o’clock in the morning). Maybe the fact that I have a cold accompanied with a running nose justified me crying in the last ⅓ of this book. I like the fact it was a bit different from Edenbrooke. Although I normally don’t prefer flashbacks, this book was amazing in it. It made you want to know what was next and really satisfied my curiosity about what happened in the past. I have heard people said Kate, the main protagonist, was a bit cold-hearted but I sympathize with her. Her relationship with her family made me just want to hug her tightly and be an understanding friend. I loved that she dreamed big and she was herself, her complicated little self.(Also, she has a cat therefore I like her.)
“It has thirty-five rooms, twelve chimneys, two wings, a conservatory, stables, and a top-notch view, There is,reportedly, a secret passageway that was once used by priests during the Reformation, although I will neither confirm nor deny it, as you will, no doubt, find it more intriguing and mysterious if you have something to wonder about.” – Henry Delafield
Kate Worthington always wanted to go to Blackmoore, the manor of her best friends’ family. Henry and Sylvia Delafield , her friends, were able to go there every summer. Now, Kate will have the chance to go this summer upon the promise made from Henry Delafield. It might be the last chance he can invite her to Blackmoore because Henry will soon be married to Miss St.Claire. Unfortunately, some conflicts arose and her mother denied her the chance to go. With the advice of Henry, Kate offered to bring Maria, her sister, to Blackmoore too and then her mother agreed to let her go but Kate pressed her luck and asked if she could also go to India with her aunt Charlotte after going to Blackmoore. Her mother refused and after some words thrown back and forth, a compromise was reached. If Kate can receive and refuse three proposals at Blackmoore, Kate can go to India as she wish but if Kate fails, Kate has to do whatever her mother ask of her even if it is to marry the sickly Mr. Cooper.
Kate Worthington was an adventurous and down-to-earth character. I sympathized with her because I could sense that she doesn’t have a connected and loving relationship with her family except maybe her little brother Oliver. If her mother was from the 21st century, she would be a major cougar and you will know why when you read the book (especially at the last half of the book). She has spent her life trying to avoid being her mother. With a scandal surrounding her family (shown through flashbacks), I can understand why she is who she is. Kate is musical, curious, and best of all, she is optimistic about the world. She loves exploring mysterious rooms, loves Mozart ( but later loves Faust), and she loves the freedom given to birds who can fly higher than anyone else. I hope anyone who reads this book can stick with her till the end because I think she is awesome.
“It perches at the top of very large trees and sings into the face of a storm. As if daring the storm to frighten it. As if trying to prove that it can outsing a gale. It is so very brave.” I smiled and shrugged. “I admire it.”
— Kate describing a mistle thrush( bird)
Henry Delafield was very caring and understanding. His friendship with Kate deepened when his father passed away. At first Henry hated Blackmoore but with Kate’s wild curiosity about Blackmoore, he too began to love Blackmoore as it was now his home.
His gaze lifted from the ribbon to my face, and he said in a quiet voice, “ I think the most profound beauty is found in what our hearts love, And I love this, Kate, more than I love anything else. It is beyond beautiful to me. It is home. It is …” He paused, and squinted a little, as if looking into the sun, but his gaze stayed steady on me. “It is the sight I want to see every day, for the rest of my life.”
During their time at Blackmoore, Henry is courting Miss St. Claire ( a match made by his mother). Also, Kate requested of him something very surprising ( I was smiling so wide and in my mind I was like “ HAHAHA, YEAH!”) Her straightforwardness is so funny. (:
Be prepared for details about Greek Mythology and birds. At first, I was doubtful about the birds but after finishing the books, I have a newfound interest about birds. As for Greek Mythology, I enjoyed it (It reminded me of my sophomore year of high school).
Kate’s relationship with Sylvia Delafield was very interesting to me. Mostly because it wasn’t lovey-dovey friendship where nothing can go wrong. They had different personalities yet they were friends for so long (this part I kind of get/relate to). I was intrigued by it because both were always choosing in their minds “Friendship over Love? Love over Friendship?” which was very real.
My opinion on the ending (Spoiler(?)) : I felt that India was an escape to Kate. She never really solved the conflicts with her mother. At the end, they still didn’t accept each other (which really tugged at me). I do respect Miss St. Claire and the fact that she wasn’t angry (unless Henry lied about how she was totally okay with it). I am not sure if she settled the conflict/strain with Sylvia. I did enjoy the last page, so sweet they named their first daughter Olivia (after her little brother perhaps?).
Spoiler-ish(?)/ Comments : Wow, Henry made her a model house of Blackmoore. That was so cute and touching. Also, did you all read the part where they were like holding onto each other on the tower at the abbey? I did not get what they were doing ( maybe it is because of my cold). They were running/swinging/whirling but I could not comprehend what exactly they were doing.
This book was a delightful read. I cried (so much), laughed, smiled at the edge of my seat. 5/5? Seriously, I don’t like rating things. I just want to talk about books I like and enjoy. — Sophie