I drank down this book like a sweet glass of iced tea. The backdrop of the castle is charming in every sense in this book that sparks magic, mostly in the personality of the characters. Each character glows with life so that they're almost four-dimensional.
The opening image of a young woman writing in the kitchen sink for the sake of somewhere to be struck a chord with me. This story, while not fast-paced or action packed, is told through the narrator Cassandra Mortmain, Smith's prose dripping with life and promise, as this young woman is on the cusp of becoming an adult.
Concentrating on relationships of every nature, this novel shows us what it is to truly feel emotion, to feel them potently and for the first time. It feels so very real and so very English that it will stay with a reader for a long time after being put back amidst the dust of other paperbacks. It particularly haunts me when I visit National Trust properties.