April is struggling to come to terms with the death of her husband. Left alone now with two stepchildren on the cusp of finding their own way in life, April feels even more alone.
Finding some solace in revisiting her past, she goes back to Tindledale where happy childhood memories were made and stays with her Great Aunt Edith in Orchard Cottage.
April suddenly finds herself with new friends in Tindledale as well as new challenges. Orchard COttage is no longer the same. Great Aunt Edith has sadly declined and with it so has the cottage and the orchard from where it takes its name.
April doesn’t seem to have time to grieve but is thrown into thatched roofs, cider making, fires, but the mystery of what happened to Winnie, Edith’s sister. Edith keeps confusing April with Winnie and when lucid moments reveal more it seems that there is more to find out.
Being back in Tindledale is heartwarming. If you have read from the beginning then you will recognise some of the characters, but this can very much be read as a standalone novel. There is a great mix of different people and you get to glimpse at life in a village without even leaving your favourite reading chair.
I know I want to go to Tindledale, I want to be able to visit all these places and join in the knitting group, drink in the Duck and Puddle and enjoy a cream tea in the Spotted Pig Tearoom. Sheer bliss.
A lovely heartwarming and moving story which you would expect from this author if you have been reading her work since it has been published. However there was something more to this book, it had a lot of depth and research and made the story and the characters even richer.
I cannot wait, but will have to, for the next story from Tindledale.
Thank you to netgalley, the publisher and author for allowing me the opportunity to read this novel.
The Secret of Orchard Cottage is out on 2nd June.
If you want to catch up with Tindledale in the meantime, try The Great Christmas Knit Off and The Great Village Show