The Path to the Sea – Liz Fenwick

Three women, Grandmother, Mother, Daughter and one house – Boskenna almost like the fourth women in this story of secrets and lies and the mystery that can arise from one action and subsequent reactions.

It is the 1960s, the world is still very much in the throws of the Cold War, there is much going on. To get a break from that Joan and her diplomat husband have arrived to spend time in Cornwall, at their home, Boskenna. However it seems that you are never alone.

One weekend, to celebrate her husband’s birthday a house party is underway but there is some undercurrent between the walls, between the guests and between Joan and her husband.

Events take a rather interesting and dangerous course and it is one weekend that no one will ever forget.

Especially Joan’s daughter, Diana.

She witnesses many things, she is apart of everything but is unseen in the shadows as she watches the glamourous people at her fathers party. But some things she sees are forever indelibly seared on her brain and she can always see them, she can always feel the guilt for the events that happened.

She has hardly ever returned to Boskenna but now forced to because of the ill health of her mother, she is going to have to confront her past.

This forces, Diana to be rather distant with her own daughter, Lottie.

Escaping from the disasters of her life in London, Lottie returns to Boskenna to see her grandmother in her final days. Her grandmother apologises, reminiscent of a deathbed confession and Lottie, intrigued by what has happened in the past and very much affected by what has happened to her tries to find out the truth.

This novel is told from all the three main character points of view, to help with your understanding and timeline, chapters are dated so we go between present day and the past.

The writing is so subtle that I was immediately drawn into the house party of Boskenna and the mystery that continued to build around the events and the house had me in mind of Rebecca…….I was convinced that Mrs Danvers was going to appear. Whilst of course she doesn’t the secrets that are tied up in the house and the family are going to have to come out.

In present day telling, the mystery that Lottie was trying to unravel was fascinating and the discovery of diaries and pictures added to it all.

The Cornish setting added to the atmosphere and the author has an uncanny knack of making it all three dimensional away from the page. I could taste the salt in the sea air and feel the heat of the sun.

The Path to the Sea works on so many levels and is a book to escape right into and immerse yourself in secrets of history, of life, of family and of love.

Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for the opportunity to read this book. 

The Path to the Sea is published on the 6th June 

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