Synopsis from Goodreads
A rich, heartwarming and completely charming debut that reminds us that sometimes, you don’t find love–love finds you. Dan Hollis lives a happy, solitary life carving exquisite Celtic harps in his barn in the countryside of the English moors. Here, he can be himself, away from social situations that he doesn’t always get right or completely understand. Ellie Jacobs is a lonely housewife, her days filled with walks and poetry she writes in secret. One day, she comes across Dan’s barn and is enchanted by his collection. Dan gives her a harp made of cherry wood to match her cherry socks. He stores it for her, ready for whenever she’d like to take lessons. Ellie begins visiting Dan almost daily, drifting deeper into his world. But when she accidentally discovers a secret, she must make a choice: keep it from him and risk their friendship, or change the course of their lives forever?
A single word keep going through my head while I was reading this book. That word was lyrical and it really had nothing to do with the poetry Ellie wrote or the music created by the harp. It was the beautifully descriptive writing. I loved the way the author described how the two main characters experienced the world around them. Dan’s simple outlook on life and his appreciation of the world around him was mesmerizing and a joy to read. When he took his walks through Exmoor I felt like I was there with him seeing the views he was seeing. From the dewdrops on the grass to the smell of the pine to the tweeting of the birds, I felt like I was with Dan walking through the woods. I loved the way Dan spoke about the wood he used for his harps and how he always noticed color. Also, the way Ellie described harp music as a breath of fresh mountain air and a shaft of sunlight rippling in the water… those were just perfect similes to me. Overly detailed descriptions like this can sometimes bog down a book for me, but not this time. The author’s words were perfectly chosen and really helped me get into the mindset of Ellie and Dan and understand the things that were important to them. Like I said… lyrical!
This is a unique, unexpected love story and one that was incredibly sweet and innocent between the two main characters. Ellie was a lonely housewife with an inattentive husband. Dan was an introvert, disliked crowds and loud noises, and mostly kept to himself in the Harp Barn where he lived and worked. Neither of them really thought their lives might be missing something special until they met and started to get to know each other. Dan introduced Ellie to harps and music and gave her space to explore both in his Harp Barn. Ellie ultimately introduced Dan to something he never could have fathomed.
I really don’t want to say more about this book, because it is one of those kinds of books that needs to be read to appreciate it. You will root for Dan and Ellie. You will actually fall in love with Dan! He is a really unique and special character. I highly recommend you get this book and get to know him.
This was the 216th book I read in 2018. It became one of my top 10 favorite books read in 2018 with ease! This is a debut book by this author and I look forward to reading more of her work.
Thank you NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for a free advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Expected publication: August 6, 2019 by Berkley Publishing
My rating – 5 out of 5
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