Friday, 22 August 2014

The innkeeper's Daughter - Val Wood

Life isn't turning out quite as hoped for thirteen-year-old Bella. She lives at the Woodman Inn - an ancient hostelry run by her family in the Yorkshire countryside - surrounded by her unreliable siblings. When Bella learns not only that her father is seriously ill, but that that her mother is expecting her fifth child, her dreams of becoming a schoolteacher are quickly dashed.

Times are hard, and when their father dies Bella must also take on responsibility for her baby brother. Her days are brightened by the occasional visit from Jamie Lucan - the son of a wealthy landowner in a neighbouring coastal village. But then her mother announces that she to move the family to Hull.

Could things get any worse? Or could this move turn out to be a blessing in disguise for Bella?

Published by: Corgi - Fiction 
Year: 2012 - Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-552-16815-1

'The Innkeeper's Daughter'  is number 21 off my yet to be read bookshelf.  I now just have 5 out of the 26 books left that were still residing on my bookshelf at Christmas left to read, which in itself is very exciting.

Bella is an intelligent young girl whose only wish is to become a school teacher. Unfortunately her dreams are crushed when her father becomes ill and he tells her that she will have to finish school to help her mother in the house and look after her siblings.  Her mother has kept a secret throughout her husbands illness. She reveals to her Bella that she is expecting her fifth child but doesn't want her husband to know, Bella tells her mother than before long her father would notice but her mother assures her that he has never noticed when she carried before.  Shortly afterwards her father dies from heart failure.  It falls upon Bella and her brothers to help her run the Woodman until after her mothers confinement.    Every other Friday a young man comes into the Woodman for a drink, he often talks to Bella whilst she is serving at the bar. His wish is to move to London to train to become a doctor. Even though Jamie Lucan will get his wish, when Henry arrives Bella's mother finds it hard to return to normal and it falls upon Bella to care for Henry.   When Henry is about to start school their mother announces that she is moving the family back to Hull where she was born.  Bella and her brother are concerned as to whether their mother has made the right choice. When Jamie Lucan returns home to Yorkshire he learns that Thorpe family have moved back to Hull but nobody seems to know which hostelry they have taken over.  Years later newly qualified as a Surgeon Apothecary Jamie Lucan will get his chance to meet up with Bella again but will it be too late to tell her how he feels.

I have not read any Val Wood novels before and I found this one to be a cross between Mills & Boon and Catherine Cookson.  Nothing wrong with that if they are your type of reading.  It was a good read and I wasn't put off reading this or another Val Wood novel.

Happy reading one and all.



  1. Yes I think you probably have to be in the mood for that type of novel, but I guess sometimes a bit of escapism is good.

    1. You certainly do with some books Penny. My colleague at work has recently borrowed the Wicked books that posted about previously. She has just finished the first one and asked me whether I had read the 3rd & 4th in the series but they are another set that I have to be in the mood for even though the are a really good set of books.



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