Review – The Traveller’s Daughter by Michelle Vernal

Synopsis: Rosa Sorenson’s conversation was often peppered with sayings from her homeland. It was these conversational clangers that gave her daughter Kitty the only clue as to a childhood her mother refused to speak of. When she passes away suddenly, Kitty is resigned to never knowing the girl her mother once was. Then out of the blue she receives an invitation that will take her on a journey into the past Rosa never shared with her. Renowned photographer, Christian Beauvau has been commissioned to recreate the iconic print, Midsummer Lovers the shot that made him famous fifty years ago. It’s the first Kitty has heard of the photograph and she’s amazed to learn it features her mother as a young woman alongside a man called Michael in the Provencal town of Uzes, France. Together with Michael’s nephew she has been invited to pose for the anniversary shot. Leaving her fledgling London cupcake business in the hands of her flatmate and her ex Damien, who has been sniffing back around, she accepts. In doing so, she will find more than she ever imagined.

Kitty Sorenson has been hungering to know about her mother’s past for as long as she could remember. When her mother unexpectedly dies, she believes her chance to know the truth has escaped her until she receives the message from a photographer to redo a picture her mother did close to 50 years ago. I liked the premise for the story and the reader gets to experience Rosa’s tale first hand. I think that added character and made the story come to life. The dialogue between characters feels realistic and natural which I feel was another good piece of a story. The author’s characters are lively, humorous and lovable or unlovable in the case of Martin Donahue.

The story pace is steady although the ending feels sudden because as a reader we often want to see the build up of a relationship. That being said, I still liked the ending because the gist is that Kitty and Jonny live happily ever after healing old scarred wounds between their families. It is a beautiful tale of love, reconciliation, hope and learning of personal history. It is said sometimes that you don’t know where you are headed unless you know where you come from. I don’t think that’s necessarily always true but knowing definitely helps. Overall, great read for those who love romantic stories of reconciliation.

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