Published by Canelo
Ebook & Paperback : 25 September 2017
This cover looks absolutely gorgeous and its a pleasure to be taking part in the blog tour for The Snow Globe. My thanks to Ellie at Canelo for the invitation. I do have a copy of the book to read but in the meantime I have an extract for you, hopefully to whet your appetite but firstly here’s a little about the book.
A beautiful story of enduring love and heartbreaking choices.
As Christmas 1926 approaches, the Forbes family are preparing to host a celebration at Eden Hall. Eighteen-year-old Daisy is preoccupied by a sense of change in the air. Overnight, her relationship with Stephen Jessop, the housekeeper’s son, has shifted and every encounter seems fraught with tension. Before the festivities are over, Daisy has received a declaration of love, a proposal and a kiss – from three different men.
Unable to bear the confusion she flees to London and stays with her elder sister.
By the following summer, Daisy has bowed to the persistence of the man who proposed to her the previous year. When the family reunite for a party at Eden Hall and Stephen is once more in her life, it is clear to Daisy she is committing to the wrong person. Yet she also believes that family secrets mean she has no choice but to follow her head instead of her heart. Will love conquer all, or is Daisy’s fate already written?
Extract – Chapter 2
Like the interior of the house, the gardens at Eden Hall were a testament to Mabel. For a quarter of a century she had helped seed, sow and water; watched and waited. And, like Mabel, Eden Hall and its gardens had matured. The house’s honey-hued stone had mellowed to a silvery gray and its garden’s once inadequate shrubs had taken on more voluptuous shapes. The landscape overflowed with rhododendrons and hardy shrubbery, softened by the billowing herbaceous borders and broad, sweeping south lawns, where a gritted terrace stood guard like a moat between man and nature. And the Japanese garden, with its drooping wisteria, azaleas, bamboo and acers, its pond with water lilies, miniature stone bridge and stone lanterns, was Mabel’s pride and joy, and only just coming into its own, she claimed.
The main driveway wound a circuitous route through the scenic western gardens, where the rhododendrons loomed largest and a few ancient trees remained, before emerging in front of the south-facing house with its vast oriel windows and broad front door. The driveway then continued through an archway to the courtyard, cottages, coach house and garages, and, eventually, became the back driveway, or tradesman’s entrance, and ran down the eastern side of Howard Forbes’s estate to the road.
To the north of the house, brick pathways led to the tennis court, the orchard and the pink-walled kitchen gardens and greenhouses. Beyond this, the land fell away steeply to woodland, where bridle paths and tracks zigzagged beneath the lofty pine trees into the valley known as the Devil’s Punchbowl.
Shortly after the house was completed, the National Trust had acquired this land, and it had become a popular place for walkers and ramblers, particularly in the summer months, when Howard had from time to time found campers behind the northern shrubbery, or short-trousered foreigners ambling across his striped lawns. However, invariably polite, he had sometimes taken these tourists on a guided tour of his property and offered them a glass of sherry at the end of it.
More than any trespassers, the ever-increasing number of local property developers irked both Howard and Mabel. The new houses being built on the nearby site of the recently demolished mansion the Laurels, now to be known as Laurel Close, made them both privately wonder if Eden Hall, too, would one day be demolished. Would theirs and Mr. Lutyens’s vision—their painstaking planning over windows and aspects and views—be reduced to rubble and dust, only to reemerge in the shape of a dozen poorly built houses, sold off at exorbitant prices and collectively known as Edenhall Close? It seemed to be the way things were going. What had once been secluded and peaceful, sought after for its natural beauty and charm, was changing.
‘The world won’t be content until it has motored here, there and everywhere—honking its horn, widening every road and putting up electricity cables and streetlights,’ Howard had recently said to his wife. Mabel had thought better than to remind him that he was a horn honker himself, or that they had added to the cables and lighting in that part of the world.
Howard had been like this a lot recently: agitated and complaining. Fearful. It was his age, Mabel thought; he felt out of step with the times. Modern times. And though she sometimes felt this way also, she was quietly determined not to fall too far behind. But it was tricky, a balancing act, she thought, to set an example for her daughters, to hand on wisdom and age gracefully, while wanting—still feeling the need—to live and have new experiences.
‘New experiences!’ Dosia, her sister-in-law, had declared to her the last time they had seen each other in London. ‘That’s what you need, Mabe. What we all need.’
Mabel had created an idyll, an orderly idyll, where the dressing bell sounded at six thirty and the dinner bell at seven twenty-five, but she was bored of bells and order. She was bored of Eden Hall. She had had no new experiences for a quarter of a century, and what she longed for, privately longed for more than anything else, was a lover.
About the author:
Judith Kinghorn is the author of four novels: The Echo of Twilight, The Snow Globe, The Memory of Lost Senses and The Last Summer. She was born in Northumberland, educated in the Lake District, and is a graduate in English and History of Art. She lives in Hampshire, England, with her husband and two children.