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  • Location: Suffolk

Coming Home to Island House

Coming Home to Island House

Why a Booktrail?

1939: With the war raging, a woman returns home to face her future and indeed her past…

  • ISBN: 978-1409159599
  • Genre: Fiction

What you need to know before your trail

It’s the summer of 1939, and after touring an unsettled Europe to promote her latest book, Romily Temple returns home to Island House and the love of her life, the charismatic Jack Devereux.

But when Jack falls ill, his estranged family are called home and given seven days to find a way to bury their resentments and come together.

With war now declared, each member of the family is reluctantly forced to accept their new stepmother and confront their own shortcomings. But can the habits of a lifetime be changed in one week? And can Romily, a woman who thrives on adventure, cope with the life that has been so unexpectedly thrust upon her?

Travel Guide

Melstead St Mary, Suffolk

The village and area where the novel takes place is entirely fictional  and exists only in Erica James’ head as do all the characters she says in her author note, but there is a real house which inspired the one in the novel. Let’s just  hope it’s not as eventful as that in the book.

“The location of a novel is always important to me as it’s somewhere I have to ‘live in my head’ for a whole year while writing the book. I like to have an emotional connection with a place before I can set a book there. Island House is a combination of two houses I know, and I’m not revealing my sources! The village is fictional, but is inspired by several villages not far from me where I live in Suffolk.”

The village of Long Melford is on the map as it’s a nice village with the same three letters at the start of its name and it has an old house just outside it which has literary connections for real since it was owned by the family of Beatrix Potter no less!

Booktrailer Review

Susan: @thebooktrailer

Romily and Jack aren’t your usual couple but this is a fascinating story about just that – the odd couple of a village and the stares and comments they get, how they cope and what really goes on behind closed doors.

It was a novel where you feel close to the characters and where you go into that house, close the door and have no idea what to expect but you sit in the corner, rub your hands with glee and prick up your ears.And I don’t think that is just going to be me!

EricaJames is always very good at taking a theme, or a house in the country and putting it all together in ways you least expect. This is a story about family, regret, war and having to deal with a family death and all the emotions that brings.

I felt quite sorry for Romily  – an outsider in more ways than one! The war stories were very interesting and quite in depth – it was interesting to see and experience how people lived during those times and the letters dotted throughout were a lovely addition! Moved the story along nicely giving it an added edge.

I will dream of Melstead St Mary tonight!

Booktrail Boarding Pass:  Coming Home to Island House

Destination: Suffolk  Author/Guide: Erica James  Departure Time: 2000s

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