THE WINTER SEA
Neither time travel nor gothic romance, Kearsley’s novel is highly reminiscent of Barbara Erskine’s Lady of Hay and Mary Stewart’s works: evocative novels that lift readers straight into another time and place to smell the sea, feel the castle walls, see history and sense every emotion. These are marks of a fantastic storyteller.
Before heading to France to start her new novel, bestselling author Carrie McClelland takes the time to visit Scotland’s Slains Castle, home of her ancestor, Sophia. She is inexplicably drawn to the area and decides to stay and write her next novel there. It is strange how a connection to the land and the history of the area drives her novel forward. It is almost as if she were channeling the events of 1708, when Sophia was involved in the attempt to place James Stewart on the throne of England and Scotland. Carrie meets the landlord’s son Graham Keith and their powerful attraction seems to have something to do with the past. As the line between the past and present blurs, Carrie realizes she will not know the future until she has completed her novel. (SOURCEBOOKS, Dec., 544 pp., $16.99)