Skip to main content

Review: Season of Storms, by Susanna Kearsley


From Amazon:

Reviewers have likened Susanna Kearsley's mysterious, suspenseful novels to those of Barbara Michaels and Mary Stewart and praised her "original and colorful" characters and "brilliantly managed" plots (The Denver Post). Her newest tale, Season of Storms, evokes the majesty and mystery of the Italian Lake District... In the early 1900s, in an elegant, isolated villa called Il Piacere, the playwright Galeazzo D'Ascanio lived for Celia Sands. She was his muse and his mistress, his most enduring obsession. She was the inspiration for his most stunning, original play. But the night before she was to take the stage in the leading role, she disappeared. Now, in a theatre on the grounds of Il Piacere, Alessandro D'Ascanio is preparing to stage the first performance of his grandfather's masterpiece. A promising young actress who shares Celia Sands's name but not her blood has agreed to star. She is instantly drawn to the mysteries surrounding the play and to her compelling, compassionate employer. And even though she knows she should let the past go, in the dark in her dreams it comes back.

I read this book while I had a bad cold and needed a good, comforting read to carry me over. Season of Storms was just the kind of book that got me through that. The historical element of this book is not as strong as in, say Mariana or Sophia’s Secret, and the “mystery” that takes place in the past is a little predictable, but the modern-day story more than made up for that. There’s a mystery and some ghosts in the modern-day story, and I really enjoyed the suspense and the hint of something supernatural that seems to haunt the second Celia. The characters of this book are also well-formed and fully realized, although the second Celia seemed a lot older than her twenty-two years sometimes.

I was also fully able to appreciate the setting of this novel, too—I went to Italy in 2004, and one of the places I visited was Lake Garda and the town of Sirmione. Both are just as beautiful in real life as they’re described in this novel.

Comments

Marg said…
Susanna Kearsley is another one of those one day authors for me. One day I will get around to reading her as I really do love the sound of her books.
Cathy said…
I recently purchased my first Kearsley, and I have a feeling that it won't be long before I start reading it.

It's always a treat when the author gets a location "spot on", isn't it?

Popular posts from this blog

Review: Forever Amber, by Kathleen Winsor

Pages: 972 Originally published: 1944 My edition: 2000 (Chicago Review Press) How I acquired my copy: Amazon.com, 2004

Forever Amber takes place in the 1660s, immediately follwing Charles II's ("the Merry Monarch") return of the Stuarts to the English throne. The book features Amber St. Claire, a young woman who starts out as a sixteen-year-old country girl, naieve to the workings of the world. She immediately meets Bruce Carlton, a dashing young Cavalier, with whom she has a passionate love affair in choppy intervals throughout the book. They have two children together, but Bruce won't marry her for the reason he tells his friend Lord Almsbury: that Amber just isn't the kind of woman one marries.

Upon following Bruce to London, he goes to Virginia, leaving her to fend for herself. What follows is a series of affairs and four marriages, with Bruce coming back from America now and then. Amber's marriages are imprudent: her first husband is a gambler, her second is…

Review: Jane Austen's Letters, ed. by Deirdre Le Faye

Pages: 667 Original date of publication: 2011 My copy: 2011 (Oxford University Press) Why I decided to read: How I acquired my copy: Amazon.com, April 2013
This is a compilation of many of Jane Austen’s letters, most of them sent to her sister Cassandra between 1796 and 1817, the year of her death. Although many of Austen’s letters were destroyed by her sister in order to preserve the family reputation, the collection contains over 160 letters in which Austen gives her sister details about her life in Chawton—as well as giving us a tantalizing glimpse of what was going through her mind as she was writing her novels (especially the novel that was to become Pride and Prejudice, First Impressions). There are other letters here, too, giving advice to her niece and professional correspondence to publishers—as well as a couple of letters that were written by Cassandra Austen after Jane’s death.
To the sisters, the letters acted in the way that phone calls do today; Austen’s news is all about pe…

2015 Reading

January
1. The Vanishing Witch, by Karen Maitland
2. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
3. Texts From Jane Eyre, by Mallory Ortberg
4. Brighton Rock, by Graham Green
5. Brat Farrar, by Josephine Tey
6. Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert
7. Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy
8. A Movable Feast, by Ernest Hemingway
9. A Room of One's Own, by Virginia Woolf
10. Other Voices, Other Rooms, by Truman Capote
11. Maggie-Now, by Betty Smith

February
1. Middlemarch, by George Eliot
2. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
3. Nerdy, Shy, and Socially Inappropriate, by Cynthia Lee
4. Music For Chameleons, by Truman Capote
5. Peyton Place, by Grace Metalious
6. Unrequited, by Lisa Phillips
7. Brideshead Revisited, by Evelyn Waugh
8. A Lost Lady, by Willa Cather

March
1. Persuasion, by Jane Austen
2. Love With a Chance of Drowning, by Torre DeRoche
3. One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
4. Miss Buncle's Book, by DE Stevenson
5. One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garc…