When I come across a particularly beautiful passage in a book, I mark it with a sticky note, and as you can see from all the cat stickies prowling through my copy of The Secret of Nightingale Wood by Lucy Strange, it’s a remarkable book.
It’s the story of a girl called Henry (I loved it from that moment) who finds comfort and meaning in the world of books. After her family’s life is turned upside down, they move to Hope House to start afresh, but, of course, they don’t.
Henry’s father has gone away for work, and her mother is ill. The vile Doctor Hardy wants to lock her away in Helldon, an asylum where horrific “treatments” await. He even thinks that Henry has inherited her mother’s madness.
Through the book, Henry unravels the secrets of Hope House, discovers what the adults around her don’t want her to know, and in the process lets go of a dark story she’d been holding on to.
This is a beautiful book – both the story and the way it’s written. It is an enthralling read that kept me up past my bedtime.
You can read a preview on her publisher’s website.