Fiction Book Reviews

Historical Fiction | The Path to the Sea | Liz Fenwick

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Liz Fenwick became one of my favourite authors from her debut novel and each year, I eagerly await to see where she’s going to take me next.   If you enjoy intrigue and suspense, The Path to the Sea should be one of your reads this summer.


The Path to the Sea Liz Fenwick book cover

Boskenna, the beautiful, imposing house standing on the Cornish cliffs, means something different to each of the Trewin women.

For Joan, as a glamorous young wife in the 1960s, it was a paradise where she and her husband could entertain and escape a world where no one was quite what they seemed – a world that would ultimately cost their marriage and end in tragedy.

Diana, her daughter, still dreams of her childhood there – the endless blue skies and wide lawns, book-filled rooms and parties, the sound of the sea at the end of the coastal path – even though the family she adored was shattered there.

And for the youngest, broken-hearted Lottie, heading home in the August traffic, returning to Boskenna is a welcome escape from a life gone wrong in London, but will mean facing a past she’d hoped to forget.

As the three women gather in Boskenna for a final time, the secrets hidden within the beautiful old house will be revealed in a summer that will leave them changed for ever.

The Path to the Sea beautifully evokes the mystery and secrets of the Cornish coast, and will be loved by fans of Kate Morton and Rachel Hore.


The Path to the Sea by Liz Fenwick is published by HQ (6th June 2019) and is available to purchase in digital, hardcover and audiobook formats.  The paperback publishes 16th April 2020.

Review

The format of this story works so well.  I loved the suspense and intrigue of the split timelines.  Joan (1st person) leads us up to the tragedy in 1962, Lottie narrates what happened 10 years ago in 2008 and what is happening in 2018 and Diana’s narration – she has very few memories of her father Allan and her childhood impacts on her ability to parent and engage on an emotional level. 

Information we’re given in one narration clicks into place in another.  For me, this makes a story a page turner as I’m trying to work out the information I don’t have.  I had plenty of questions that needed answers and I wanted to know the motivation behind untruths.  One of my questions was answered from a character from a previous story. 🙂 I’m jumping in right now with the fact that Chapter 68 is a shocker.  Brilliant!  Such a tangled mess …

It goes without saying that the setting is the perfect backdrop for the events that unfold but there’s something else too.  The story evokes a sense of foreboding and feels alive.  That glamorous life in the 60’s?  I was there.  I stood in the pantry with my hands covered in chocolate.  I made sure my guests needs were being met.  It didn’t matter the age of the character.  I was that character.  Talking of characters, it was great to see Tom as a younger man too.

Liz Fenwick is so very skilled at stripping back emotions, layer after layer, until the core of the pain is exposed.  And there are many layers in The Path to the Sea.  Two cataclysmic events mean that family members rely heavily on themselves, not reaching out, not sharing, but keeping the pain buried.  The story mirrors life in that emotions don’t stay buried for ever … Such a poignant but beautiful ending.

The Path to the Sea would make a fabulous film or TV series!  Would love to see this story acted out.

Highly recommended. This is my favourite Liz Fenwick novel of all time.

Author photo Liz Fenwick

Writer, ex-pat expert, wife, mother of three, and dreamer turned doer….

Award winning author of The Cornish House, A Cornish Affair, A Cornish Stranger Sky, Under A Cornish, The Returning Tide and a novella – A Cornish Christmas Carol. After ten international moves, I’m a bit of a global nomad. It’s no wonder my heart remains in Cornwall.

My sixth novel One Cornish Summer is out on the 8th of March 2018 and I’m currently writing the next book, A Path To The Sea due out in 2019.

My books are also available in Dutch, Germany, Portuguese, French, Estonia, Norwegian, Danish, Turkish, Swedish, Latvian, Serbian, Czech and Hungarian.

Connect with Liz Fenwick

Website

Twitter @liz_fenwick

Facebook page Liz.Fenwick.Author


I've been blogging about my interests at Jera's Jamboree for 8+ years. My love of reading, crocheting and being out in nature are all things that help me unwind from my role as an Inclusion Lead in a primary school. I'm passionate about early help and sharing strategies with families to empower and help build resilience. I'm a member of of my Local Authority's Early Help Operational Board, working alongside other professionals to instigate change and growth.

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