“The Beekeeper’s Daughter” (Simon & Schuster), by Santa Montefiore
International best-selling author Santa Montefiore writes an epic romance that spans two generations in her new novel, “The Beekeeper’s Daughter.” Readers are transported back and forth between Massachusetts and England unraveling a timeline that stretches over four decades. It’s the story of a daughter’s journey to find happiness and a mother’s cautionary tale of lost love.
It’s 1932, and Grace Hamblin lives her charming life. She takes care of the grand estate of the Marquess and Marchioness of Penselwood, along with her father. Her best friend, Freddie, has grown into a respectable young man, and it won’t be long before he asks for her hand in marriage. When Grace’s father dies, Freddie is the only constant in her life. It makes sense to begin a life with him, working on the estate and planning for a family. But Grace is in love with another man — a man she can never have.
Forty years later, Grace’s fiery daughter Trixie has fallen in love with the lead singer of a band. The entire community of Tekanasset Island thinks Jasper is just the type of wild child who will whisk Trixie away with the promise of a thrilling life touring the world. When his brother suddenly dies, Jasper is summoned back to England to take on the family business. He promises to send for Trixie, but Grace knows that day will never come.
Montefiore embellishes this novel with exquisite details. The descriptions that portray the fictional island of Tekanasset and its colorful residents come to life with each turn of the page. The English setting is comparably illustrated with great attention to even the smallest elements, including the science of beekeeping. By the time you read the final page, you should be able to jar your own honey.
Montefiore has painted a heart-wrenching picture of young love in “The Beekeeper’s Daughter.” Grace and Trixie both learn that confronting the past is the key to building the future.
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