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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lose yourself in Tigh na Linne
Following the death of her beloved aunt, Ruth returns to 'Tigh na Linne', the house on Skye where she spent her childhood summers. Having already lost her partner and father that year, Ruth is there to grieve, and to decide what to do with her life next. She's reunited with a childhood friend, and confronted with memories. She may also be confronted by a ghost...
Published on 3 Jun. 2012 by Michelle Moore

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Rather unbelievable story
I kept trying to read this book, going onto another and finally have finished it. Like several other reviewers I found having sex with a ghost just unbelievable and not really relevant to the story. Was Ruth so desperate she had to bed the ghost? Get real!

Forgetting that for a moment, the actual story of Janet and her music would have made a good tale in...
Published 12 months ago by Polly


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Put It Down!, 3 Jun. 2012
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
Some books are just perfect for a rainy Sunday afternoon curled up in an armchair with a mug of tea. 'The Glass Guardian', the latest from Linda Gillard (whose previous books I have read and loved without exception), is one of them. But it's not just a light-hearted read; I found this book both thought-provoking and strangely comforting. I ended up reading it from cover to cover (well, metaphorically, on my Kindle) in a single sitting as I couldn't bear to put it down for more than a few moments.

The Glass Guardian deals to some extent with themes of loss and the dark roads that life sometimes leads us down. Yet it isn't a depressing book, rather the contrary. It has a strong focus on the importance of friends and loved ones in combatting loneliness, not forgetting of course the healing powers of love in its many guises. Ruth is a woman in her early 40s, who has inherited a dilapidated house in a beautiful setting on the Isle of Skye. She spends time there while she decides what to do about the house, delving into the history of Tigh na Linne ('the house by the pool') as well as learning more about her aunt and other family members who used to call it home.

It's a difficult book to review without giving away hints of the plot, which would be unforgivable. So suffice to say that I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good read, whether you think you're a fan of 'supernatural' stories or not. In fact I often stay clear of books with that label, but this is by no means typical of the genre, and in my opinion completely transcends the stereotype.

The Glass Guardian made me want to visit Skye and see the amazing backdrop of this book for myself. Highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Guardians are fragile., 29 Jun. 2013
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Jo D'Arcy (Portsmouth, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Glass Guardian (Paperback)
Ruth is grieving, in a very short space of time she has lost the man she called her partner and companion suddenly, her father who although was perhaps rather distant since her mother died when she was young was still her father and her Aunt who became the surrogate mother and a main influence in her life. All of them have gone. Leaving behind their own legacies through memories and property.

Ruth has inherited a house on the Isle of Skye where she spent most her summers. She is there to remember her aunt and sort through those memories of the past that her aunt has left behind and lay some things to rest, so she can move on with her future. But with going through memories, it brings the past very much back to life. In fact it brings a past back which was even before Ruth was born.

I was a bit skeptical if not very skeptical about a book which features a character falling in love with a ghost. I have never been into anything paranormal either with reading, films or television. However, Linda Gillard has proved me wrong with this novel.

In fact you actually forget that there is a difference of hundred or more years and that actually it works, although I won't deny that some bits were a bit strange, the descriptions of Ruth when she touches Hector made me shiver, and I was not sure about the love making. However, these are only small points that I personally was not sure about, by no means criticisms of the writing, which as normal from Linda Gillard is excellent. I felt the cold in the house, with the snow that made it more than a Christmas card scene but also was a reflection on the mood and temperament of Ruth. I could see the light shining brightly through the window which started the journey that Ruth went on throughout the book.

There are developments and twists that are perhaps unexpected and some that are quite expected but it is the joy of reading a book that's sole focus is just not one theme - this is a romance, this a ghost story, this is a story about those who have lost, a musical tale which has captured a nation, a story of family secrets, family houses with stories of their own to tell, history for us all to understand and friendships that sometimes none of us can grasp! This is a Linda Gillard novel and it has everything in it and more, which is why it was a joy to read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved it, 6 July 2012
This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
It's not often these days that I get really excited about a book, but this is one of those times. I simply loved it. Not only is it a lovely, sensitively written story with characters you fall in love with immediately, but it is also deeply moving and inspiring.

Blurb: Ruth Travers has lost a lover, both parents and her job. Now she thinks she might be losing her mind... When death strikes again, Ruth finds herself the owner of a dilapidated Victorian house on the Isle of Skye: "Tigh na Linne", the summer home she shared as a child with her beloved Aunt Janet, the woman she'd regarded as a mother. As Ruth prepares to put the old house up for sale, she's astonished to find she's not the only occupant. Worse, she suspects she might be falling in love again. With a man who died almost a hundred years ago.

This is not your ordinary paranormal romance; no vampires, werewolves, witches and so on, and no young gorgeous kick ass heroine. Ruth is in her forties and totally normal, except that she sees a ghost. Only one ghost though, a very special Scottish one called Hector. He even wears a kilt. Hector died in WW1 but he hasn't stuck around to scare anyone, just the contrary. He's more like a guardian angel. Love shines through his every word and action. I don't want to tell you too much because Hector's story is the mystery that you must read to unravel. All you really need to know is that this heart-warming book is a rare gem and truly not to be missed.

The ending? Beautiful and completely satisfying. I cried tears of joy. The story went exactly the way I wanted it to but I never found it predictable. Linda Gillard is an inspiration. I'd love to be able to write as well as her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting, 14 Jun. 2012
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
This is so difficult for me to review because I don't want to give away any spoilers!!

When Ruth finds herself bereaved of her Aunt Janet who's been like a mother to her, and who's death comes at the end of a difficult 12 months of loss. Ruth finds herself left the beautiful property Janet owned on Skye. Her career is in the doldrums and Ruth is at a crossroads; trying to decide where her future lay and whether she can afford to keep on Janet's house, Tigh na Linne. While going through Janet's possessions Ruth gets an insight into her family history, Janet's music career and also discovers there is a resident ghost at Tigh na Linne. One who's future is tied up with her own. One that needs her help...

As with Linda Gillard's other books (and I've read them all) there are certain common elements to The Glass Guardian, as there are in other books. First off we have a likeable heroine who has more than one potential 'hero' to choose from. Which means we get to choose who we prefer all the way through and see if she ends up with our first choice at the end. There is a stunning location with a wonderful old house and garden - Tigh na Linne. I'd love to know if it's inspired from a real location! Because this property really was another character in this novel. Music, love and loss also figure heavily.

What I've come to expect from Linda Gillard's stories is that these are not formulaic. Each one is very different in theme. The big theme for this novel is paranormal romance. I've read many books over the years with ghosts or with paranormal/supernatural undertones and it's very difficult to create a convincing story without going for the horror/gothic genre or lots of fantasy -ie throwing in the werewolves and vampires. Which may not appeal to every reader of Linda's other stories. Linda succeeds in creating a convincing story without a werewolf or vampire in sight and certainly no horror!

Another thing I liked about the book is much relies heavily on coincidence. An almost Dicken's like coincidence is no bad thing and adds to the atmosphere as it makes you wonder just how much supernatural influence has on the lives of the characters.

This novel would appeal to her regular readers and a whole host of new readers that like a little supernatural interest to their stories. If you've enjoyed the play Blythe Spirit by Noel Coward or "Her Fearful Symmetry" by Audrey Niffenegger I suspect you'll enjoy this novel too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A story to haunt you..., 10 Jun. 2012
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Protovicar (Liverpool, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
Ruth Travers finds herself suddenly and utterly alone after the deaths of her lover, father and aunt in the space of months. Aunt Janet had been Ruth's last surviving relative and now Ruth faces the task of dealing with her aunt's house, the beautifully situated but somewhat run-down Tigh na Linne. Isolated by the closing Isle of Skye winter and afraid that the wreckage of her glamorous London career is drifting beyong her reach, Ruth could be forgiven for feeling she is going mad with loneliness. Except that she isn't mad. Nor is she quite alone...

Linda Gillard writes, as ever, with a strong sense of place and space. Skye and its remote beauty are perfectly drawn, as are the characters of Ruth and the various male visitors to Tigh na Linne. However, what struck me most was the author's ability to conceptualise and describe what should be nigh on impossible to describe; my spoiler-free example would be her explanation of where ghosts go when you don't see them. But then, the author has demonstrated this skill brilliantly with her previous work, STAR GAZING.

It's no secret that this is a ghost story but it is also a love story. Underlying both is a strong plot that kept me clicking the buttons on my kindle with barely a pause for the other distractions of everyday life.

If you've read Linda Gillard's previous work you shouldn't be put off by the apparent departure from her usual genre, as her deft exploration of human interactions is just as you'd expect. And of course there is a certain paranormal element to STAR GAZING. If this is the first book of Ms Gillard's that you try, I can also heartily recommend her other works, which have many haunting characters if not necessarily ghosts...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent read, 31 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: The Glass Guardian (Paperback)
This is a great book. A little shorter than i am used to but this is no bad thing- it just means the author didn't waffle unnecessarily. It is engaging from the start an the story is interesting-an inherited old house, a ghost and a story from the past to be revealed. The characters are likeable too which is always a bonus. I thought i had the ending sussed early on but as the story progressed it took a different turn and although I wasnt left too surprised at the end, I was left totally satisfied.
If you like authors like Rachel Hore, Kate Morton and Lucinda Riley- treat yourself to this one!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A treat well worth savouring ...., 28 Dec. 2012
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jaffareadstoo (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
Gripped by the sense of the past, The Glass Guardian is a paranormal story which delves into, not just the pain of love and loss, but also into the resilience of the human spirit.

They say that you should save the best until last, and I knew when I clicked open The Glass Guardian on my Kindle I wouldn't want to put it down, and so my Christmas `end of year' treat to myself was to read the story uninterrupted once the family festivities were finished. To be immersed in a Linda Gillard novel is to lose all sense of your own time and place as almost without realising it you become as one with the characters she creates. With incredible skill she brings the story to life in such a realistic way that I really felt like I was sitting with Ruth in the kitchen at Tigh-na-Linne, and I actually felt a shiver of cold along my spine as the temperature in the house dropped and the emotional secrets of the Glass Guardian window were revealed.
There is so much to talk about with this novel, but to do so would reveal the heart and soul of the story, and this is definitely one of those books that you really should discover for yourself.

The Glass Guardian is a treat well worth savouring.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Truly Lovely Ghost Story, Highly Recommended, 25 July 2012
This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
I purchased this book because it's a ghost story set in Scotland - a combination I'm powerless to resist. I took it with me on vacation, and I'm glad I was on holiday because this was one of those books that I couldn't stand to put down. It was an overall spectacular read with believable characters and an intriguing story, but what I loved most about it was the character Hector (or 'Heckie'), the ghost of a Scottish WWI soldier. He was just so lovable and admirable - truly a noble gentleman from a bygone era who had been thrust into the horrors of war, as so many were during that period in history. As I read, I knew that since he was a ghost, I couldn't expect the same sort of happy ending for him as I would for a truly living character. I devoured every word of his relationship with Ruth, dreading the inevitable ending. I just couldn't bear the thought of them being separated. However, I was very pleasantly surprised by the unexpected ending. I don't want to spoil it for anyone else, as it was such a good twist, but I will say that I was spared the heartache I'd anticipated and finished the book feeling satisfied. A highly recommended read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Smashing, 2 July 2012
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
I am a huge admirer of Linda Gillard and download her books as fast as she can write them. I've loved every one so far but when I read on the blurb that The Glass Guardian was a supernatural story - a romance featuring a ghost, I thought 'Oh Lord.'
But, as usual with Linda, a few pages in and I was won over. The Glass Guardian is written in her usual effortless style and wonderful easy to read voice, the characters are solid, the setting idyllic, and the story line is believable - yes believable, ghost and all.
I'm still sceptical (to say the least) when it comes to the supernatural but for a little while I believed in it. I believed in Hector, in the fact that love was possible across the divide, I believed everything that was put before me because Linda's words made it all seem perfectly possible.
The Glass Guardian is a wonderful read, a proper 'in bed with a box of chocolates' book. You won't want to miss it. I'd really like to give it five stars but four will have to do because it isn't my favourite Linda Gillard - it is superb but there are a couple of hers that I like better. Keep them coming Linda.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Rather unbelievable story, 12 July 2014
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This review is from: THE GLASS GUARDIAN (Kindle Edition)
I kept trying to read this book, going onto another and finally have finished it. Like several other reviewers I found having sex with a ghost just unbelievable and not really relevant to the story. Was Ruth so desperate she had to bed the ghost? Get real!

Forgetting that for a moment, the actual story of Janet and her music would have made a good tale in itself. The plot itself was good and am sure Ms Gillard could have written it as a straight forward mystery. Ruth was so mixed up she didn't know whether she was coming or going. The number of times she kept changing her mind as to whether to return to London was unbelievable especially bearing in mind there was deep snow outside. The ending was just too 'chocolate boxy' for me. I do like happy endings but this was rather slushy.

Looking at the negative comments I've just written perhaps someone is thinking why have I given it three stars. Well it is due to the fact that the actual story was interesting and I wanted to see what eventually happened. I just wish the author had approached it in a different way.
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THE GLASS GUARDIAN by Linda Gillard
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