Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Blog Tour: The Secret Daughter of Venice by Juliet Greenwood (includes UK giveaway)


Kate Arden has always known that she wasn't really an Arden. She had a vague memory of a life before she came to live at Brierley. Those memories are on the periphery of her brain, slight glimpses but nothing solid to grasp on to.

She also knows that she needs to get away from her home. She loves Brierley, with it's grand but crumbling house, the Roman mosaics that are just waiting to be further uncovered, and her three sisters, Rosalind, Cordelia and Bianca. But her father is domineering, determined to marry one of his daughters off to a wealthy member of the aristocracy. It actually doesn't matter which one of them really. More than anything though, she needs to pursue her passion for art.

When her Mama passed away she left each of her daughters an illustrated book of Shakespeare with the hint that there is a clue in the book for each of them.

Kate has looked through her book and could see no clues, until one day, she does find something. She finds an image of a terrace with a mountain in the background, which is something similar to one of the memories she has.  She also finds a picture of Venice.  What could it possibly mean?

And so Kate begins to follow a trail of clues that lead her first to Birmingham where she helps out a charity that is involved with children who have been orphaned during the war, to St Ives in Cornwall and then to Italy. Can this trail of clues help her to find out what or who she is looking for.

This is a dual storyline book, not timeline, but storyline. Whilst we follow Kate as she tries to work out what her story is, we are also following Sofia who has returned to Italy after many years of living in America. She is also searching for her true self, for the facts about what happened many years ago which prompted her to run away to America.

This book is the second book in the Shakespeare Sisters series by Juliet Greenwood. Because I don't like to read a series out of order I actually read the first book, The Shakespeare Sisters, a few weeks ago. From a timeline perspective, The Shakespeare Sisters was set in the years leading up to WWII and the in the years after the war. This book is more firmly set in WWII and it's aftermath.

I really liked both of these books, and will definitely read the next Shakespeare Sisters novel whenever it comes out. I liked the descriptions of the various locations from Cornwall to Venice and to the Bay of Naples. 

Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and Rachel's Random Resources for the review copy of this book. I am sharing this link with the New Release Challenge hosted by The Chocolate Lady's Book Review blog and with the Historical Fiction Reading Challenge which I host

About the book

The Secret Daughter of Venice

The paper is stiff and brittle with age as Kate unfolds it with trembling hands. She gasps at the pencil sketch of a rippling waterway, lined by tall buildings, curving towards the dome of a cathedral. She feels a connection deep in her heart. Venice.

England, 1941. When Kate Arden discovers a secret stash of drawings hidden in the pages of an old volume of poetry given to her as a baby, her breath catches. All her life, she has felt like an outsider in her aristocratic adoptive family, who refuse to answer any questions about her past. But the drawings spark a forgotten memory: a long journey by boat… warm arms that held her tight, and then let go.

Could these pictures unlock the secret of who she is? Why her mother left her? With war raging around the continent, she will brave everything to find out…

A gripping, emotional historical novel of love and art that will captivate fans of The Venice SketchbookThe Woman on the Bridge and The Nightingale.

Purchase Links


About the author

Juliet Greenwood is a historical novelist published by Storm Publishing. Her previous novel, The Last Train from Paris, was published to rave reviews and reached the top 100 kindle chart in the USA. She has long been inspired by the histories of the women in her family, and in particular with how strong-minded and independent women have overcome the limitations imposed on them by the constraints of their time, and the way generations of women hold families and communities together in times of crisis, including during WW2.

After graduating in English from Lancaster University and Kings College, London, Juliet worked on a variety of jobs to support her ambition to be a full-time writer. These ranged from running a craft stall at Covent Garden to running a small charity working with disadvantaged children, and collecting oral histories of traditional villages before they are lost forever. She finally achieved her dream of becoming a published author following a debilitating viral illness, with her first novel being a finalist for The People’s Book Prize and her first two novels reaching #4 and #5 in the UK Kindle store.

Juliet now lives in a traditional quarryman’s cottage in Snowdonia, North Wales, set between the mountains and the sea, with an overgrown garden (good for insects!) and a surprisingly successful grapevine. She can be found dog walking in all weathers working on the plot for her next novel, camera to hand.


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Giveaway to Win 3 x Signed copies of The Secret Daughter of Venice (Open to UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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