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review 2019-06-12 15:51
Gorgeous descriptions of the West Highlands
The House Between Tides - Sarah Maine

With a prologue set in 1945, the rest of the action is split between 1911 and 2011. We are treated to two stories, connected by place and family, about two women, dominated by men they are afraid to leave, featuring two love affairs and the tale of a troubled artist and his paintings.



We see how land clearances remain politically volatile in modern Scotland. I enjoyed the descriptive pieces, especially descriptions of place, which were particularly effective. However, the love stories were full of cliches and the mystery wasn't exactly compelling. It was still an enjoyable read. It has an atmosphere that wraps around you like the westerlies Maine describes.

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review 2017-05-27 17:22
The House Between Tides by Sarah Maine
The House Between Tides - Sarah Maine

An atmospheric debut novel about a woman who discovers the century-old remains of a murder victim on her family’s Scottish estate, plunging her into an investigation of its mysterious former occupants.

Following the death of her last living relative, Hetty Deveraux leaves London and her strained relationship behind for Muirlan, her ancestral home in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides. She intends to renovate the ruinous house into a hotel, but the shocking discovery of human remains brings her ambitious restoration plans to an abrupt halt before they even begin. Few physical clues are left to identify the body, but one thing is certain: this person did not die a natural death.

Hungry for answers, Hetty discovers that Muirlan was once the refuge of her distant relative Theo Blake, the acclaimed painter and naturalist who brought his new bride, Beatrice, there in 1910. Yet ancient gossip and a handful of leads reveal that their marriage was far from perfect; Beatrice eventually vanished from the island, never to return, and Theo withdrew from society, his paintings becoming increasingly dark and disturbing.

What happened between them has remained a mystery, but as Hetty listens to the locals and studies the masterful paintings produced by Theo during his short-lived marriage, she uncovers secrets that still reverberate through the small island community—and will lead her to the identity of the long-hidden body.


The House Between Tides is one of those books that I have wanted to read for a long time, I just never got the time for it. But, I've decided to go through my ARC's and read the ones that I've been meaning to read. And, I started with this one.

The House Between Tides title, description, and cover captured my imagination. The discovery of a hidden body that's been buried for decades is not the start Hetty had counted on when she arrives at the old house she has inherited. And, her restoration plan seems to fall to pieces too. However, she can't help being fascinated by whom the body could be and bit by bit will she discover deep dark buried secrets...

The book's story takes place both during 1910 and 2010 and I found both time frames fascinating to read about. Sarah Maine has written a captivating tale about forbidden love, regrets and how memories can consume one's life. Some secrets are perhaps not that surprising, but all and all was this book quite intriguing. The only drawback was that now and then did I feel a bit impatient with the story, not bored, I just wanted the characters to get some things to grip, like Hetty telling Giles off or Beatrice realizing why Theo was so obsessed with Cameron (which was pretty obvious why). I loved the books scenery. I could really picture the island and its wildlife.

But, the ending was perfect, tragic, but at the same time uplifting and I'm looking forward to reading more from Sarah Maine in the future.


I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through Edelweiss for an honest review.

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review 2017-04-11 19:08
Beyond the Wild River
Beyond the Wild River: A Novel - Sarah Maine

Evelyn Ballantyre has grown up in a privileged but sheltered life on Ballantyre estate in the Scottish Borderlands in the 1890's. Her father is a respected magistrate and has spent his life carefully building up his wealth and taking care of his holdings. One choice Ballantyre has made was to take in a young man found poaching on his estate; James Douglas was given the role as a groom and became a companion to the younger Evelyn. Years later, a hunting incident leaves an older poacher dead on Ballantyre grounds. The poacher was James' friend from his youth. The murder is pinned on James and he very nearly escapes. Both Ballantyre and Evelyn know of his innocence; however Ballantyre has no evidence-yet and Evelyn is just simply confused. Five years after the murder Evelyn is whisked away with her father on a trip to North America where they travel around New York City, Chicago's World Fair and finally a camping and fishing trip up the Nipigon River. On the Nipigon fate will take its turn to bring everyone together from the day of the murder on Ballantyre estate where the truth will finally come out, revenge will be served and past mistakes made right.

Beyond the Wild River took a path much like a meandering river; beginning with a murder, then an extravagant trip dotted with flashbacks to Evelyn's time growing up at Ballantyre and an explosive ending with a waterfall. It did take me a while to feel like I was taken into the story and it took me until about 30% of the way through to really get into it. I'm not sure how much of the trip before arriving at the Nipigon was really necessary. Once the mystery between Evelyn, Ballantyre, James and inadvertent guest Rupert Daltson begins to unravel, I had trouble putting the book down. Much like the river rapids, the four travellers could not keep their memories about the night five years ago tucked away and their emotions soon bubbled over. However, Ballantyre is a surprising force to be reckoned with and I was truly astonished at how he planned on resolving everything. The characters also took me a little while to get to know; Evelyn and James were the main focus. I really wanted to like Evelyn, however she was a little hard to identify with. Evelyn eventually grew on me as she made her way camping and fishing in the wilderness. James was the most thorough character and I did want to know more about his past. I do wish that a little of James and Evelyn's future would have been revealed at the end. Overall an interesting and intricate historical mystery that will take you from the upper class Scotting Borderlands to the wild Canadian rivers.

This book was received for free in return for an honest review.

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review 2016-11-20 06:47
The House Between Tides
The House Between Tides - Sarah Maine
ISBN: 9781501126918
Publisher: Atria 
Publication Date: 8/2/2016 
Format: Paperback
My Rating: 4 Stars 


British author, Sarah Maine, delivers an atmospheric mysterious and suspenseful debut, THE HOUSE BETWEEN TIDES —a compelling mix of historic, Gothic and contemporary. A mystery of two women a century apart.

From 1889 (Theo), 1910 (Beatrice) - 1945 to present, 2010, (Hetty) a woman returns to an inherited home and discovers a hidden secret.

A crumbling mansion, an estate in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides. With the intentions of renovating and selling it as a hotel. Hetty begins her journey.

However, the old house, has secrets, history, and a sordid past. Harriet Deveraux (Hetty) sets out to unravel the secrets and mystery surrounding it’s former owners, Beatrice Blake and her husband Theo, a famous painter (also with a hidden life).

The Muirlan House. It was huge. Much larger than Hetty had been expecting. A sign, danger, unsafe, deep out. Private property. She could not wait to see the inside. The place was now hers. An abandoned house. She knew nothing of restoring houses or running a hotel.

The island as her grandmother had described, on the edge of the world. She had been warned. The lawyer acting has her grandmother’s executor had told her the place had been empty for many years and would need work. A nightmare! Some called it a “death trap.”

Local assessor James Cameron finds a skeleton beneath the floorboards. There were bones. A corpse. An oval locket on a gold chain. A woman.

In 1910, Beatrice Blake, a young bride, and her husband, a painter, Theo Blake, travel from Edinburgh to Theo’s estate on Muirlan island, the remote Muirlan House. He had a deep bond with the place and inspiration for many of his early paintings. Their marriage does not last. Betrayal.

Theo had brought her here to his dream world, eager to share it but his passion had turned aside. Inward, excluding her, darkening to something she could not understand and she had become lost.

Alternating between timelines, between 1920 and 2010, with copyeditor, Hetty Deveraux, arriving from London to the Muirlan House.

Grief. Her parent’s death. An accident, but sudden and violent, and now three years later. Loss. A failed takeoff, a crash just beyond the runway. Then her grandmother’s death two months previously from dementia. She felt like she had been sleepwalking ever since.

Hetty had never had the sense of belonging. Her father’s job with the foreign office had meant that home was not a place, but a transient. Her childhood had been spent flying back and forth from boarding school.

An old crime with dark shadows lurking over Hetty’s new start.

Theo Blake was something of a recluse, with his last twenty years alone in the house, letting it fall apart around him. It was always said the Blakes left the island together, although she never returned.

Since inheriting the house, Hetty had been trying to learn more about the mysterious Theodore Blake. While his artistic achievements were well-documented, there was little written about his personal life and his later reclusive years were unrecorded except for the fact that he had drowned as an old man while crossing Muirlan Strand.

Maine takes us back to the history of young Beatrice, her family and meeting Theo Blake, the strikingly handsome man. Thereafter a mystery. What drove the couple apart? A connection.

Mystical, moody and dark. Mysterious and intriguing. Richly psychological, the author weaves secrets from both past and present with an evocative setting and story, both haunting and romantic.

For fans of Miranda Beverly-Whittemore, Karen White, Sarah Jio, and Kate Morton!

I also purchased the audiobook, narrated by Justine Eyre for a captivating performance. Looking forward to more by the author.

A special thank you to Atria Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/single-post/2016/04/01/The-House-Between-Tides
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review 2016-09-20 17:01
The House Between Tides - Sarah Maine

The tale of a once grand house, now almost a ruin in the Outer Hebrides featuring Beatrice in 1910/11 and Hetty in 2010. Both have to deal with men who would like to control them. Beatrice is married to a talented artist and Hetty has inherited the estate and has to decide what to do with it, but her plans are thwarted when bones are discovered. I loved the gentle style of writing, all the descriptions of the island, inhabitants including the wildlife and moody sea. What a wonderful debut novel and I am already looking forward to reading many more books by this talented new author.

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