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I love to read, mostly historical fiction with a little historical romance and some ghosty stories thrown int.

The Mermaid Garden

The Mermaid Garden - Santa Montefiore This is one of those books that was on my wishlist forever! I had checked it out from the library a few times, and each time needed to return it unread. Finally, I started listening to the audio and I was hooked. In this novel, Ms. Montefiore seamlessly wove together two plot lines one past and one present, . Both stories were compelling and held my interest. Each had little twists and subplots which really drew me in.In the “present”, Marina and her husband are running a seaside hotel in Devon. They are childless, but his two grown children live there. His son, helps run the hotel. His daughter, Clementine, is living there temporarily, while she earns some travel money. Marina and her step-daughter do not get along. Clementine blames Marina for her parents divorce. I did not like Clementine when she was first introduced in this story. She was disresptful and lazy. I pictured her rolling her eyes and stomping off like a spoiled teenager.Marina is interviewing artists to live at the hotel for the summer to teach guests how to paint. The one she settles on is Rafa from Argentina. He is talented, well mannered and gorgeous Clementine is immediately attracted to him, and I was grateful for this because it really gave her a chance to grow up. Once she did, I liked her more and the story started getting good.Even though it seems like we spend most of our time with Marina in England, I think I liked Floriana’s story a bit more. When we meet her, she is just a girl, abandoned by her mother and left to live with her drunk father. This girl’s spirit is amazing though. She sees the beautiful Tuscan villa and knows that she belongs there. She meets Dante, the owners son and believes that they belong together. Over the years she spends more time at the villa with the family, and when they aren’t there she keeps an eye on the gardens and the dog. Almost everyone who meets her loves her. Eventually even Dante starts to realize his love for her. It really looks like her prayers were answered.Ms. Montefiore did a fabulous job with this novel. The characters, even minor ones, were very well developed. Floriana’s useless dad and her friend’s conniving mother were both perfectly distasteful Dante and his mother and sister were loving and welcoming. Even his dog was wonderful.From the first few paragraphs that I listened to, I knew I would love this book. And, even though I ended up reading it instead of listening to it, I was right. I did love it. I enjoyed every minute I spent with this book. This is my first Santa Montefiore novel, bu I know it won’t be my last.Checkout this review and MORE at Momwithabook.com