Today it’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour for The Secret Legacy by Sara Alexander. It is is a wonderfully written tale of love, passion, desire and most of all of sacrifice.
About the Author
Sara Alexander graduated from Hampstead School in London and went on to attend the University of Bristol, graduating with a BA hons. in Theatre, Film & TV. She followed on to complete her postgraduate diploma in acting from Drama Studio London. She has worked extensively in the theatre, film and television industries, including roles in much loved productions such as Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows, Dr. Who and Franco Zeffirelli’s Sparrow. Her first novel is Under a Sardinian Sky, The Secret Legacy is her second.
Follow @AuthorSaraAlex @HQStories on Twitter Visit saraalexander.net
About the book
Do our secrets make us who we are?
Santina is spending her final days at her home, Villa San Vito, in the beautiful Italian town of Positano. As she decides the fate of the magnificent eighteenth century palazzo she must confront the choices that led her here.
In 1949, hoping to escape poverty, young Santina becomes housekeeper to a distinguished British major and his creative, impulsive wife, Adeline.
When they move to Positano, Santina joins them, raising their daughter as Adeline’s mental health declines. With each passing year, Santina becomes more deeply entwined with the family, trying to navigate her complicated feelings for a man who is much more than an employer―while hiding secrets that could shatter the only home she knows . . .
I think Santina has mixed feelings about motherhood, perhaps because her own relationship with her mother was cut short. She finds herself bonded to the child she takes care of, and yet has no problem severing ties when she feels it is the right thing to do. That has nothing to do with the depth of her feelings and possibly more about the fact her own familial ties were dramatically cut short when she was child.
Known as the orphan child from the mountain, and considered by many to be the poor scum of the earth. This cloud of her birth and heritage follows her throughout the book among her own people, and is certainly a reason she keeps a distance from a certain suitor at times. Becoming part of his family would also mean always being treated as if they had ‘saved’ her in some way.
Santina jumps at the chance to leave her home and country to try to discover more of the world and herself. It is almost ironic that her travels go full circle and she ends up in the same place she started from. She becomes the live-in cook, maid and subsequently also the nanny to a British couple. The mother of the child becomes ill soon after the birth of her daughter, and so begins a story of many decades of suppressed desire and a love that develops over time. The type of love society finds outrageous and scandalous.
This is a story we find a lot in history, of a woman who keeps her secrets until the grave. A woman who sacrifices everything to ensure her loved ones are safe and kept away from any hint of a scandal. Her ultimate sacrifice is exactly that, a sacrifice, and I wonder if it is her way of putting her own guilt to rest for loving and being the mother to a child who isn’t her own.
The writing soothes and laps over the reader like the salty waves licking over your feet, as you wander along the beach with warmth of the sun on your face. It’s melodic and hypnotic, written and to be read at a steady pace. Savouring the beauty of the words and the imagery they project.
The Secret Legacy is a wonderfully written tale of love, passion, desire and most of all of sacrifice. Alexander brings us drama, heartache and a suitcase full of unrequited desire and simmering passion, and yet does so in such a subtle way the reader feels the beauty of the tale instead of the pain of the characters. It’s a beautiful read.
Buy The Secret Legacy at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: HQStories, Harper Collins Uk