Nestled between an 11th century church at the top of the lane, and an ancient ford at the bottom, there stands a stone cottage. It has a slightly crooked front door framed by an open porch. Blue-tits nest in the porch eaves – content and undisturbed – as the door, now swollen with the paintwork of many generations, is too stiff to open. The door is painted a delicate shade of green with an unconscious nod towards a French manor house. Casement windows sit in perfect symmetry on either side of the doorway – just as a child would draw – and an exquisite flower border, heady with sweet aroma, is bedded down under the front windows. It is a cottage that sits so comfortably in its position, surrounded by rolling Devonshire hills, wild flower meadows and twinkling streams, only a flash of Divine inspiration could have created it.”
Chapter Three, The Wedding Cake Tree
Can a mother’s secret past provide the answers for a daughter’s future?
When failed opera singer turned style photographer, Grace Buchanan, is ordered by her hippy-chick mother, Rosamund, to drop everything for two weeks and travel the British Isles with a mysterious stranger – war-weary Royal Marine Officer, Alasdair Finn – she is more than a little surprised; after all, her mother has been dead for six months…
At the reading of the will, Grace discovers that Rosamund kept the life she lived before Grace was born a secret. That secret is now to be revealed to Grace in the form of seven letters, written by her mother, just before she died. Entranced by the British landscape and caught in a brief but perfect moment in time, Grace and Alasdair travel to four enchanting locations, walk in Rosamund’s footsteps, scatter her ashes, and read a letter at each one.
What follows is an emotional, fun-filled, and adventurous journey of a lifetime, on which Grace slowly uncovers the truth about Rosamund’s incredible life story, leading both Grace and Alasdair to question their futures and address their own secret demons from the past.
But can Rosamund’s puppeteering from the grave alter life’s course for Grace, or will things take an unexpected turn?
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The Wedding Cake Tree is available on Amazon as paperback and as a Kindle download.
Melanie Hudson now lives on the Devon side of Exmoor. You can find out more about her on her website. Melanie is also on Twitter @Melanie_Hudson_