Follow archaeologist Rose as she visits the Cornish village of Falford in Phillipa Ashley’s engaging new summer novel.
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There are some things that I look forward to every summer. Watching two weeks of tennis at Wimbledon (if only on my TV), relaxing with a glass of something chilled in the garden and of course, a new summer book to read.
Phillipa Ashley has become one of my favourite authors, and as summer rolls around each year, I look out to see if she has released a new novel. Usually I take it away with me on holiday, but this year I read her latest book at home.
An Endless Cornwall Summer sounds like heaven, doesn’t it? I certainly wouldn’t say no! But Cornwall isn’t on my travel itinerary just yet, so I’ll settle for reading about it instead.
Phillipa Ashley’s novel starts in a hospital room, where Rose is in isolation after receiving a bone marrow transplant. She recovers from the procedure but when her grandmother dies, she decides to try and make contact with her donor.
Unfortunately, the mystery donor doesn’t want to get to know Rose. Despite only knowing that the donor was a young man, Rose decides to track him down. Her amateur sleuthing leads her to Falford, a fishing village in Cornwall that is conveniently near to an archaeological dig where Rose is working.
Through the long summer months, Rose grows close to the Falford community, especially the Morvah brothers, Finn and Joey. But can she discover who it was that gave her the gift of life?
When I started reading this book, I fully expected that I would enjoy it. Philippa Ashley draws the reader into the world that she’s created and her love of Cornwall really shines through. It’s clear that she did a lot of research when writing An Endless Cornish Summer, from the technical details of sailing with Finn and Joey to the medical details of Rose’s ongoing treatment. This attention to detail adds to the reader’s enjoyment and makes the fictitious world of Falford feel incredibly real.
As I expected, I did enjoy An Endless Cornish Summer. I wanted to visit Falford and see the boatyard for myself, visit Oriel in the Cornish Magick shop and go sailing out into the estuary onboard Finn’s boat Siren. I kept changing my mind about which of the brothers would end up being Rose’s mystery donor, and the eventual reveal had a delicious little twist.
And although the novel’s resolution ties up most of the loose ends nicely, there was one little opening left. I can’t help but hope that it leads to a Christmas novella.
After all, an endless Cornish summer would be heavenly, but going back for Christmas would be even better!
Rose Vernon is headed to a quiet Cornish village – to find the man who saved her life.
For Rose, every day is a gift. She narrowly survived a life-threatening illness and owes everything to her anonymous donor. Determined to thank him, Rose follows a trail of clues that lead her to the little Cornish fishing village of Falford.
But things become complicated when Rose is drawn into local life, becoming involved in the legendary Falford Regatta and meeting the handsome Morvah brothers – one of whom might just be the man she’s looking for. But which one?
Can Rose find the answer she’s searching for, or will she lose her heart before the summer is over?
An engaging introduction to Falford that makes me want to go back again! 8/10