How do you heal a broken house?
First you unlock its secrets.
Alone on an island, surrounded by flowers that shine as dusk begins to fall, sits an old, faded house. Rooms cannot be rented here and visits are only for those haunted by the memory of loss.
When Liddy receives an invitation, she thinks there must be some mistake – she’s never experienced loss. But with her curiosity stirred, and no other way to escape a life in which she feels trapped, she decides to accept.
Once there, she meets Vivienne, a beautiful, austere woman whose glare leaves Liddy unsettled; Ben, the reserved gardener; and Raphael, the enigmatic Keymaker. If Liddy is to discover her true purpose in the house, she must find the root of their sorrow – but the house won’t give up its secrets so easily . . .
The House of Sorrowing Stars is a beautiful and moving story that captivated me right from the very first chapter. The story follows Liddy, a young woman whose family are eager to see her married off to the infamous Jack Heathcote. Liddy can’t think of anything worse but she has nowhere else to go and no other options but to do as her family tells her. Until one night she receives a mysterious invitation to the House of Sorrowing Stars. Liddy accepts the invitation, traveling to the strange home and meeting people who call the house home – Vivienne the mistress of the house, Ben the gardener and Raphael the keymaker. Liddy knows there is much more to this house and the people that live there, but will she be able to unearth their secrets?
This book intrigued me the moment I laid eyes on it. It has a beautiful cover and the synopsis had me hooked almost straight away. The House of Sorrowing Stars is filled with beautiful, lyrical writing and I was completely swept away in this magical fairytale. This is absolutely the sort of book that stays with you long after you’ve finished reading. It focuses so much on the idea of loss and grief and is both heartbreaking and heartwarming. The story is well-paced and excellently crafted. I started the book one evening and I was glued to the page, reading the first hundred pages in one sitting. I was so engrossed in the story that I just could not look away. Cartwright’s writing style is so incredibly vivid that I felt absolutely transported to the House of Sorrowing Stars.
Cartwright has created some incredibly complex and likable characters in this book and it was one of the reasons I could not put it down. Liddy is a compelling protagonist and I couldn’t wait to see where the story would take her. All the characters felt incredibly well crafted and fleshed out. The mix of historical fiction and fantasy is blended so well in this story and I am so excited to read more from Beth Cartwright. If you’re looking for a stunning lyrical historical fantasy to keep you reading long into the night, The House of Sorrowing Stars is a must read.