What a wonderful find. I had not previously read Santa Montefiore novels before, I am so glad I found this to delve into.
You are taken on a wonderful journey with Celestria(a great name)who goes from being a shallow, empty headed young girl into a passionate and deep young woman. Her journey is started with the supposed suicide of her wonderful father 'Monty'. His manner was kind, the way he loved and had time for all people within his life, the villagers at Pendrift, his own staff and even those he confided in far away from home.
A gut instinct makes Celestria realise that there was more to this man than meets the eye and his love for his family. She sets out to find the truth, but can she handle what she finds in Italy and who she encounters.
Pendrift Hall is a wonderful setting, the family home draws all the main characters together at the beginning of the book and really sets the scene for what is to come. As a reader we can see the weak and strong amongst them. Ultimatley though, the main protagonists are Celstria, her empty mother Pamela and the story of 'Monty'.
Italy was a great setting for the second half of the novel. You could smell the trees, flowers, the fruit and I really imagined I was in the house with Freddie, Mrs Halifax and the exuberant dogs. Santa Montefiore really brought this to life for me.
Without wishing to give anything away, this book was a page turner and great for a holiday or if you want to escape into wonderful parts of Cornwall and Italy.