Publication Date: December 2013
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
“He reminded himself of the necessity of maintaining focus and keeping his goal steadfastly in front of him, for the last time he allowed his heart and mind to be occupied by a woman, his ruination followed.”
-William Sterling’s Thoughts on Women
William Sterling is the owner and landlord of Rosemere, a boarding school for young ladies, located on the moors outside of Darbury, England. He is a philanderer and gambler who has lost the majority of his fortune at the time the novel opens. William receives a beating out on the open moor in the dead of winter as a warning from his creditors. Somehow he manages to make his way to Rosemere and collapses in the barn. Patience Creighton, the current headmistress of the school, is called upon to treat William quietly and secretly in the middle of the night.
By standards of the day, Patience was a spinster who should have relegated thoughts of love and romance to the back shelf at her current old age of 25. However, she feels the fluttering of interest as she tends her landlord and is a bit dismayed when he disappears again in the early hours of dawn. Over the following weeks, William makes it his business to spend more time at Rosemere after some unusual occurrences at the school.
The novel explores the relationship that develops between wild William and quiet, shy Patience as well as introduces a myriad of other characters with their own stories. The reader will meet Rawdon Creighton, Patience’s missing older brother; Lydia, Rawdon’s new wife; Cassandra, Patience’s best friend and fellow teacher; Emma, a sweet young girl that resides at Rosemere with no family to call her own; and a host of others. The characters are each unique and have side stories that tie together very well into the overall plot of the novel.
Sarah Ladd does a wonderful job in this second book of the Whispers on the Moor series. I do not frequently like a second book better than a first; but I have to say in this case, the second book was amazing. Sarah brings life to her characters by making them less than perfect at times during the story. She also appeals to the teacher in me as she uses Patience to explore teaching moments throughout the novel. Great job, Sarah Ladd! Another terrific read!