The Path to the Sea by Liz Fenwick

the path to the sea

I’m thrilled to have received a surprise copy of The Path to the Sea by Liz Fenwick in return for an honest review and would like to extend my enormous thanks to Joe Thomas at Harper Collins for sending me a copy. Liz has been a favourite author for years and I can’t believe this is the first time I’ve reviewed one of her books since I began blogging.

Published by Harper Collins imprint HQ on 6th June 2019, The Path to the Sea is available for pre-order through the links here.

The Path to the Sea

the path to the sea

Sometimes going home is just the beginning…

Boskenna, the beautiful, imposing house standing on the Cornish cliffs, means something different to each of the Trewin women.

For Joan, as a glamorous young wife in the 1960s, it was a paradise where she and her husband could entertain and escape a world where no one was quite what they seemed – a world that would ultimately cost their marriage and end in tragedy.

Diana, her daughter, still dreams of her childhood there – the endless blue skies and wide lawns, book-filled rooms and parties, the sound of the sea at the end of the coastal path – even though the family she adored was shattered there.

And for the youngest, broken-hearted Lottie, heading home in the August traffic, returning to Boskenna is a welcome escape from a life gone wrong in London, but will mean facing a past she’d hoped to forget.

As the three women gather in Boskenna for a final time, the secrets hidden within the beautiful old house will be revealed in a summer that will leave them changed for ever.

My Review of The Path to the Sea

Secrets of the past echo in the present as Diana and Lottie head home to Joan.

The Path to the Sea is just fabulous. I loved every word. Liz Fenwick held me entranced throughout to the extent that I thought about the characters and events when I wasn’t reading, couldn’t wait to get back to the story and yet didn’t want it to end. This is glorious storytelling at its very best.

I love the manner in which Liz Fenwick evokes a sense of place. Cornwall and Boskenna House are as much a living presence as any of the people so that there is a cinematic feeling. Everything from sea salt on skin, through agapanthus flowering in borders, to the taste of brandy adds richness and texture to an already captivating read. The attention to detail is so deftly written that it feels as beautifully smooth and polished as the sea-glass on the beach, bringing The Path to the Sea alive in the reader’s mind.

I thought the plot was wonderful. There’s deep, deep love, intrigue and guilt beating at the very heart of the narrative in a way that I found spell-binding. The blending of events in 1962 and 2018 is superb, with a sense of history and politics underpinning a very personal and touching story so that I could feel the emotions physically in my own body. I’m desperate to say more about the imagery but I can’t spoil the story for other readers. Just believe me when I say Liz Fenwick transports the reader to her time and place completely. It’s the poise of her writing that has such an incredible effect. The party at Boskenna has a glamour that is balanced and complemented by the more ordinary aspects of life in 2018. There are surprises too that make The Path to the Sea such a satisfying and riveting read.

Much as I thought the plot was outstanding, it is the characters who entranced me most. Joan, Diana and Lottie are so distinct and yet in many ways are so similar that what happens to them touched my heart. Their interactions, their guilt, their omissions – all combined to sweep me into their lives so that now I’ve finished reading The Path to the Sea I can’t let them go. They are reverberating in my mind.

I don’t feel I’ve done justice to The Path to the Sea. It is a phenomenal read that I adored because Liz Fenwick transported me to her world so completely I forgot my own time and place. I didn’t just read The Path to the Sea, I lived it and feel bereft now I’ve finished reading it. It is, quite simply, wonderful.

About Liz Fenwick

liz fenwick

Liz Fenwick was born in Massachusetts and after nine international moves she’s back in the United Kingdom with her husband and a mad cat. Liz made her first trip to Cornwall in 1989 and bought her home there seven years later. Her heart is forever in Cornwall, creating new stories.

You can follow Liz on Twitter @liz_fenwick, visit her website and find her on Facebook.

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