- Book Title: Secret of the Manor
- Author: Taylin Clavelli
- Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing (November 6, 2015)
- Book Length: 230 pages
- Genre: Paranormal/Horror, Contemporary, Romance
- Reviewed by: Diane
- Posting Date: November 17, 2015
Secret of the Manor is one of those rare novels that draw you in, gently yet persistently—encouraging the reader to turn the page without bludgeoning him. The author, Taylin Clavelli, respects the art of storytelling, appreciates the subtleties and inherent drama of character development, and takes the time to introduce the reader to times, locales, and the people who inhabit them, each leaf unfolding with exquisite care.
Throw in a mystery, seriously well done action, and some magical realism that flows as naturally as … well, as the magic of storytelling should, and you have the makings for a splendid read.
Of course, those elements make it difficult to review without the dreaded, hateful **Spoilers** that seem inevitable with a well-crafted plot.
We first meet Warren Blake, a man on the cusp of major changes, a man who recognizes he wishes to meet the future on his own terms, an admirable man. A man with secrets of sorts, a man smart enough to know that he’s paid a sufficiently steep price to play the expected roles,
inside his career and out. We come to know this man very well, we feel his triumphs and appreciate the measured pace by which he’s learned to conduct his life. He is a man who knows what he loves, yet he is not a man in full command of all life has to offer.
When Warren relocates to the Cotswalds, he discovers a church and a graveyard where fascination becomes obsession, and strange circumstances lead him into the unexplainable realms of magic, curses, and souls at risk.
Warren becomes the one thing he never dreamed of—a champion whose journey holds the key to undoing past injustices that echo strongly in his own small corner of the world. And on that journey, Warren tentatively discovers that matters of the heart are closely linked to the task set for him.
In his hands is placed the hopes of Alex, the young man bearing the curse in modern times, and Nicholas whose existence will forever be haunted by the injustices of history.
This is a wonderful tale—with jousting, swordplay, churches and manors, gallops over hill and dale, wonderful major and minor characters, and plenty of suspense to keep you up half the night reading.
An unequivocal Five Stars. Brava Ms. Clavelli for a tale told well.
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