The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano
|The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano|
|Reviewer: Kerry King|
|Summary: The Seventh Miss Hatfield is really a good old fashioned love story at heart, with a definite twist in time. Literally.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 304||Date: June 2015|
Cynthia is a simple, All American girl who whilst generally happy – she’s fed and watered with a roof over her head - and relatively care free, is somewhat bored of her existence in Suburbia.
Miss Hatfield is Cynthia’s mysterious and rarely glimpsed neighbour. What an enigma she is and how compelling and irresistible it is for Cynthia to attempt to discover more about her.
Ever hear the phrase Be careful what you wish for? When Cynthia is invited into Miss Hatfield’s strange and slightly eccentric home with its odd photographs and mesmeric portraits, she cannot resist the opportunity to find out more about her inscrutable neighbour. Cynthia quickly wishes she had shown a little more restraint as Miss Hatfield reveals that she is a time-travelling immortal and, courtesy of a droplet of water from the Fountain of Youth slipped imperceptibly into her cup of tea, so now is Cynthia!
If you were thinking that immortality is the greatest gift ever to be bestowed, you, like Cynthia, would learn that being able to time travel and live forever most assuredly has its downsides and in a quest to retrieve a stolen painting from an age decades before Cynthia was born, she is about to realise that you cannot live in a time where you do not belong.
Would you risk your life to stay out of your time with the one you love or harden your heart and return to live forever?
Anna Caltabiano is seventeen. Seventeen! And this is her second novel. Yes, that’s right. She’s basically a child with a writing gift that utterly belies her youth. Now, The Seventh Miss Hatfield actually wasn’t what I was expecting; I anticipated a tale that would be loaded with time travelling capers and the like – I was thinking a cross between The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and Dr Who but in fact it was a rather lovely, gentle and old fashioned love story, set in the days where gentlemen dressed for dinner, butlers buttled and ladies wore gloves and rode side saddle. It was sweet and charming and innocent and to be honest, I can’t remember the last time I was induced to read a PG romance story like this one that also had enough gumption in the tale to keep my attention.
In summary and without wishing to cast a gender-stereotype over its audience, I’d say that The Seventh Miss Hatfield is your modern day take on a Barbara Taylor Bradford novel; whilst probably not appealing to the blue rinse brigade as such, it isn’t chick lit and it isn’t literary and so I’d say it falls somewhere in between. Miss Hatfield (the seventh one, not the sixth) is certainly likeable; she’s fallible, youthfully exuberant and kind and Henley Beauford is warm and human and you will likely enjoy their interaction as much as I did because there isn’t anything to not like, irrespective of the plethora of negative reviews that I have seen for this book (I definitely think they all forgot the age of the author when they set about shredding the story and the characters in this lovely tale).
Anyway, if you like a light-hearted romance in the corridor of another century then this is a delightful story. If you are hoping for The Time Traveler’s Wife Part Deux, then it’s not for you. And it’s really not for you if you were hoping for Doctor Who!
The Seventh Miss Hatfield may very well be up your alley and if you think it is, you might also like to take a look at The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger because it’s one of the most beautiful books I have ever read and we very much enjoyed it here at Bookbag. Perhaps a time slip kind of tale is more your thing, in which case The River of No Return by Bee Ridgway is more than worthy of your pocket money.
Finally our thanks to the kind folks at Gollancz for sending us this copy for review.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano at Amazon.com.
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