THE INVINCIBLE NINTH ROMAN LEGION MARCHES FROM YORK TO FIGHT THE NORTHERN TRIBES. AND THEN VANISHES FROM THE PAGES OF HISTORY.
Archaeologist Verity Grey has been drawn to the dark legends of the Scottish Borderlands in search of the truth buried in a rocky field by the sea.
Her eccentric boss has spent his whole life searching for the resting place of the lost Ninth Roman Legion and is convinced he's finally found it--not because of any scientific evidence, but because a local boy has "seen" a Roman soldier walking in the fields, a ghostly sentinel who guards the bodies of his long-dead comrades.
Here on the windswept shores, Verity may find the answer to one of the great unsolved mysteries of our time. Or she may uncover secrets someone buried for a reason.
Shadowy Horses is centered around Eyemouth, which is an actual fishing port located in south-east Scotland. The story references actual places and events including The Ship Hotel, the fish auctions and the Herring Queen Festival. While it hasn’t actually been verified that Eyemouth is the last resting place of the Ninth Roman Legion, this is what the fictional character Verity Gray is drawn to. Actual evidence had yet to be discovered, only the protestations of an eight year old boy that claims he’s seen and spoke with someone who walks the fields… a Roman soldier that died over two thousand years ago.
The Shadowy Horses is my third read by Susanna Kearsley and while it’s not my favorite, it still managed to guarantee that this is one author I will be reading everything she writes. This gothic tale felt more subdued than I had anticipated based off the enticing summary but was still wonderfully intriguing. The main character Verity was a strong and intelligent character that was a joy to read about. While I didn’t see the necessity to include a budding romance into this potentially enigmatic story line it ended up being a lovely addition making this an extremely well-rounded story. The ending was strangely dramatic and felt out of place from the way I thought the story was going but still left me altogether satisfied. I will most definitely be seeking out more from Susanna Kearsley.
"Whatever time we have," he said, "it will be time enough."
Eva Ward returns to the only place she truly belongs, the old house on the Cornish coast, seeking happiness in memories of childhood summers. There she finds mysterious voices and hidden pathways that sweep her not only into the past, but also into the arms of a man who is not of her time.
But Eva must confront her own ghosts, as well as those of long ago. As she begins to question her place in the present, she comes to realize that she too must decide where she really belongs.
From Susanna Kearsley, author of the New York Times bestseller The Winter Sea and a voice acclaimed by fans of Gabaldon, du Maurier, and Niffenegger alike, The Rose Garden is a haunting exploration of love, family, the true meaning of home, and the ties that bind us together.
This is the second Susanna Kearsley book I’ve read and she’s quickly becoming a favorite of mine. Her writing style is simply beautiful and has a definite talent for writing fascinating stories. I’m not usually a fan of wordy books but she does such an amazing job of describing the simplest of things you can’t help but love it.
One of my favorites:
“And at the window of the room the cold November rains slid down the glass and cast their shifting shadows in a room that could no longer hold the light.”
Rose Garden tells the story of Eva and her struggles to cope with the death of her sister Katrina. Katrina had requested to be cremated and have her ashes scattered; Eva decides it would be most fitting for her to scatter them where the two of them once belonged: Cornwall, England. She travels there and stays with her two childhood friends Mark and Susan. During her first night there, she wakes to the sound of two men having a conversation only to find there weren’t any men in the house. She then begins to see things that others cannot and is unable to explain it. When she finds herself thrown back in time, she meets Daniel Butler, a man who was a part of the Jacobite Uprising. Knowing what she does about the outcome of said event, she finds it difficult to not disclose information to him that could essentially change the future. The more time spent with Daniel, the closer she becomes to him, as she finds herself bonding with him as two people who have both lost loved ones. Eva’s only concern is for her inability to control when she goes back in time and how the two of them can ever have a life together based on this instability.
Lovely novel. I’ll definitely be picking up more of her books in the future.