Santa Montefiore’s “The Girl in the Castle” trilogy continues to captivate


Courtesy of HarperCollins Publishers

“Girl in the Castle,” the first novel in Montefiore’s trilogy, released in 2016.

English Sunday Times best-selling author Santa Montefiore has written sixteen bestselling novels, which have been translated into thirty different languages and have sold two million copies around the world. Her books captivate and thrill readers with their complex characters, unique plots and beautiful prose. However, what most draws readers to her works is the message that she embeds into the heart of each of them. At the center of each novel, Montefiore employs love as a root force. It drives the characters and propels the twists and turns of the story, leaving readers emotionally fulfilled. On her official website, Montefiore explains the importance of love in her novels: “when you boil life down to its essence, love is what you’ll find. I hope to sweep you away, to make you laugh and cry in equal measure, but most of all to make it possible for you to escape for a while”. Montefiore’s writing has a magical element to it, spellbinding readers and carrying them into its landscape.

    Montefiore published the first book in her series, “The Girl in the Castle,” on September 27, 2016. The novel takes place on the charming emerald hills of Ballinakelly, Ireland in the early twentieth century during the Irish War of Independence. The story centers on Castle Deverill and its inhabitants. While the plot intertwines the lives of many different characters, it focuses primarily on Kitty Deverill, Lord Deverill’s daughter, and Bridie Doyle, the daughter of the castle’s cook. Although the two girls come from completely different worlds and social classes, their friendship binds them together. However, as tensions arise in the lives of the girls, as well as Ireland’s struggle for independence, their worlds begin to drastically change. Nevertheless, although their lives constantly shift, Ireland maintains a special place in their lives.

    Not only is the novel emotionally enriching, but it also carries readers into the past, delving into important events in history. As Montefiore leads her plot into the Irish War of Independence, she fills it with excitement and tension. In the next two novels of the trilogy, “The Daughters of Castle Deverill” and “The Last Secret of the Deverills,” Montefiore continues to weave historical elements as major components of her story, exploring the 1920s, Great Depression, and World War I. For those who love historical novels, this trilogy will prove satisfying and enjoyable.

      As each novel progresses, the complex dynamics between each character intensifies, and so do the struggles that persist within the Deverill family. Additionally, in the second and third novels, Montefiore adds a deeper background to the underlying tensions and the history of the Deverills, further pulling in readers and compelling them to remain invested in the characters’ lives. While Montefiore does fill her novels with darkness and despair, at the crux of it all, readers find a message about love, family, home and the importance of forgiveness. In addition, each central character undergoes a metamorphosis that helps them to strengthen and to understand those around them. Truly, wisdom and truth mark the pages of Montefiore’s novel, teaching that compassion and love conquer all.

    Overall, Montefiore’s novels touch readers in a delightful way, tugging at their heartstrings through every twist and turn. As one slowly unwraps each chapter, it is easy to enjoy each stage in the Deverills’ story. Readers who love to escape into fictional worlds and cherish historical reads will have difficulty letting go of these stories. And, as the 100th anniversary of the Irish War of Independence falls on January 21st, this trilogy makes a perfect read.