Book Review: The Secrets of Castle du Rêve by Hannah Emery

Today I review Hannah Emery's second novel, The Secrets of Casle du Rêve. If you missed it, Hannah stopped by a few weeks ago to talk about the inspiration behind Castle du Rêve, read it here.

Title: The Secrets of Castle du Rêve
Author: Hannah Emery
Published: February 18th 2016 by HarperImpulse
Amazon | Amazon UK

Blurb: In the quaint, seaside town of Silenshore a legacy of secrets is about to be revealed…

Growing up in the imposing Castle du Rêve during 1940s wartime, young Evelyn longs for a life outside the castle walls. She dreams of attending glamorous parties, gracing the silver screen and being swept off her feet by a dashing, debonair beau. But innocent Evelyn is unaware that her bid for freedom from the oppressive castle will change the course of more than just her life…

In the early Sixties, sweet, intelligent Victoria meets the man of her dreams! Yet the expression of their love comes with consequences. In the shadow of the mysterious castle, is their relationship doomed from the start?

In the present day, Isobel has just learned she’s pregnant. An unexpected challenge she can only hope she’s up to. Except living in the father of her child’s family home, beneath the eyes of the castle, all is not as it seems… Soon secrets that have been hidden for decades threaten to change the lives of Isobel’s new family irrevocably.

Three women’s lives tangled together in a web of secrets, scandal and deceit, as the legacy of Castle du Rêve is finally discovered…

A must read for those who enjoyed the Richard & Judy bestseller, Amy Snow.

First of all I would like to thank the publisher for sending me a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*

Review: The Secrets of Castle du Rêve tells three different stories set in three different times. At first sight, they don't seem have anything in common expect for the fact that they all revolt around the imposing Castle du Rêve. But as the stories unfold we soon sense that they are linking in more ways that we expected. 

I really enjoy reading stories from the past, so I found Evelyn's and Victoria's parts really interesting. Evelyn's is set in the 40s, when the castle still belonged to the du Rêve family. From that parts, you can really imagine the castle at its bests, full of people enjoying a sophisticated soiree with lots of food and drinks. And then, Victoria's is set in the 60s, when the castle had become a university. She was my favourite character, so young and naive but so full of life and curiosity. Also, her story really got to me. The unfairness of it and the helplessness I felt. 

The third story focused on Isobel and was set in the present day. Hers was probably the part I enjoyed less as I didn't really warm to her. She was always full of doubts and no guts. Plus, when she discovers she is pregnant, she moves into the house of her new partner's mother. That house gave me the chills, you could tell it was full of secrets and the atmosphere was so tense you could cut it with a knife. While reading about her and her new life, I always felt a bit unsettled. Like the story was building into something big that wasn't that big at the end. 

But as I said, I really enjoyed the historical parts and I found the link between the stories well thought and executed. I was surprised more than once during the story and I found myself reading non-stop to know more and more. The story certainly had an air of mystery that held my attention until the end. So all in all, I'd say The Secrets of Castle du Rêve delivers what it promises and then, some more.

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