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Dearest Rose

3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  672 Ratings  ·  136 Reviews
Rose Pritchard has fled her home and her abusive husband with little more than the clothes on her back – and her most precious possession, her seven year old daughter Maddie.

But Rose does have one other thing left – a glimmer of hope that she can build a better life for herself and her daughter, whatever it takes…
Paperback, 448 pages
Published September 27th 2012 by Arrow
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Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen
****4 Gut Wrenching Stars****

ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

You know, when I first started reading this book, I was ready to put it down and figure out how to word my review in order to not offend the author.  But I kept at it and I wasn't disappointed - Yeah there were times that I got confused with the "timing" of the writing - it would bounce back and forth between the past and present without warning or preamble. Getting past this though, the story is heart-felt an
Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~*

Worn down by an abusive husband/relationship, Rose Pritchard clings to the kind words written to her in a letter years ago. Steeling her courage she takes her daughter and leaves everything behind and heads for the village of Millthwaite. Rose then searches for the only person who had ever offered her even a smidgen of hope, but once she arrives she is confronted by obstacles she never expected and now wonders if she has made a terrible mistake after all. At a crossroads now, she wonders if she
Rating: 3 out of 5

A beautiful poignant story about a woman who leaves behind a life of abuse, in search of something better for her and her daughter. This novel started out great and overall, it was pretty good. The trials and tribulations of life is beatutifully depicted here. The fact that one man's actions could have such great consequences, is humbling.

Having said that, however, I found it hard to like the characters.

For starters, the main character's father was a flawed man. He has ruined
Jane Stewart
3 stars. Enjoyable about a woman finding her strengths and a new life. The daughter’s personality added specialness.

Abused wife Rose runs away from her husband. She takes her 7-year-old daughter with her. Rose was married for 13 years. Frasier an art dealer visited Rose’s home once 7 years ago. He was looking for Rose’s father a painter. Frasier and Rose had a connection in their brief conversation. Because of that connection Rose travels to where she hopes to find Frasier. The story is mostly
Dale Harcombe
Sep 01, 2014 Dale Harcombe rated it it was ok
Two and a half stars. Rose and her seven year old daughter Maddie arrive at a Cumbrian Bed and Breakfast, where despite the late hour and having no luggage, they are taken in by Jenny and Brian. They have ended up at Millthwaite following a chance meeting years with an art dealer called Frasier and a follow up postcard he sent her. Rose's only thought at the time is to get far away from a life that has become unbearable. Unexpectedly Rose finds she has ended up in the same place as her father wh ...more
Sharon Redfern
Nov 10, 2013 Sharon Redfern rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I started The Runaway Wife, I expected it to be another story of the wife who leaves, finds new love and life goes on. While it did have all of those things, it also had a strong emotional plotline about the loss of a father in a little girl’s life and how it has impacted her through her life. Rose Pritchard has left her controlling husband and come to a small town to seek out a man she met only once. Frasier McLeod showed Rose kindness at a time when she really needed it and she has never ...more
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews
Amanda‘s review posted on Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Review copy provided for an honest review


The Runaway Wife by Rowan Coleman is a compelling novel that will stay with you long after it is over. It a story that touches on the subject of domestic abuse and of one woman’s journey of finding a safe haven for her and her daughter. The author unfolds this story one layer at a time, slowly uncovering the reasons for Rose leaving, which made me intrigued until the end. However, Rose is also
Tara Screen
Mar 01, 2017 Tara Screen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this book. It was such an easy book to read and so full of turmoil. You really felt for the characters. Would definitely recommend.
“No one knows, do they, what it’s like inside? How you feel stuff you don’t want, think things you shouldn’t. It’s like . . . it’s like you’re two people–the person who knows what to do, and the one who does what she wants, whatever the consequences.”

This book has been on my radar for a long time. I was curious about both author and narrative, specifically her presentation on the topic of abuse.

I struggled with narrative and character. I found both flawed and disappointing. As far as the plot we
Oct 25, 2012 Lisa rated it it was amazing
Rowan has always written about difficult even taboo subjects - death, divorce, single parenthood, loss, child abuse - always with some degree of humour as well as seriousness but with Dearest Rose she encompasses domestic abuse and manages to dispel the myths that domestic abuse is a predominantly working class problem that goes hand in hand with inner city sink estates and drug and alcohol problems. She is never judgemental in her writing, instead the thought and empathy that she has obviously ...more
Sep 11, 2012 Anne rated it it was amazing
I've been home from the wonderful island of Paxos for just over a week, as always, after a holiday, I've found it really difficult to get back into reading. I'm not sure why it happens, but it always does. I've picked up and abandoned a couple of books since we arrived home and was beginning to despair. I was really pleased to receive a copy of Rowan Coleman's tenth novel Dearest Rose this week and hoped that this would be the book to cure my reading malaise - sure enough it did! Thank goodness! ...more
May 17, 2014 April rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I really enjoyed this book. If you enjoy stories by the late Maeve Binchy, I think you will enjoy Rowan Coleman's brand of storytelling. Although it is not quite on par with Binchy's mastery--the narrative has a similar feel to it. It is an easy, comfortable read with a satisfactory ending.

The book also had some reflections of Stephen King's _Rose Madder_ where an abused wife escapes her traumatic life by escaping into the landscape of an actual painting. In this book, the main character, Rose,
Feb 10, 2015 Jasmin rated it liked it
Rose ist mit ihrer Tochter Maddie von zu Hause geflohen. Ihr Mann Richard hat sie und ihre Tochter geschlagen,und da hat es Rose endlich als ihre Chance gesehen,abzuhauen. Sie flieht in den Ort Millthwaite wo sie im Bed&Breakfast von Jenny unterkommt. Sie findet dort einen Platz wo sie erstmal zur Ruhe kommt und alles verarbeiten kann. Das sie in Millthwaite auf ihren Vater John trifft,hätte sie nicht erwartet. John hat die Familie damals einfach verlassen,und hat sich seitdem nicht mehr bei ...more
Cocktails and Books
This is the first book I have read by Rowan Coleman. It will not be my last! I enjoyed her style of writing, how she reveals a bit of "backstory" at a time & makes it flow right along with the present story being told.

Rose is a troubled character and readers will be captured by her & her daughter Maddie from the start. As I was reading, I put myself in her shoes--to leave home with my small child and nothing but the clothes on my back? I am not sure I would have the courage to do what Ro
Dec 14, 2013 Maria rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rose was in an abusive marriage. One day she opens the door while her husband is away and a kind stranger changes her life. When she finally gets the nerve to leave her husband the only place she thinks to go is on a post card sent by the kind stranger that she only met once years 7 years prior.

Finding herself on the run with her 7 year old daughter in tow she makes her way to a Bed and Breakfast in the town searching for the man who changed her life with an impromptu visit and some kind words.
Oct 26, 2012 Anne rated it it was amazing
Finished this one in the early hours last night, thoroughly enjoyed every moment, and it's most definitely one of my books of the year. Rowan Coleman has always been more at the "thinking woman" end of the chick lit spectrum, but this one moved her writing into a whole new league for me. All the chick lit staples are there - the sexy young barman, the scatty friend, the near misses and misunderstandings - but this is a book with a really dark underside, and some of the strongest female character ...more
Hannah Ward
Jan 14, 2016 Hannah Ward rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book to add to my collection of Rowan Coleman's books. I loved this story, it was emotional as there are a few personal issues in this story. I love the way even though there are personal issues, Rowan has approached it in a sensitive way but with lots of detail so she has obviously done lots of research. I loved the plot and I fell in love with Rose's daughter Maddie she is such a sweetheart but can hold her own. I found this book emotional but also heartwarming.
Rebecca Emin
Feb 18, 2013 Rebecca Emin rated it it was amazing
Loved the characters in this book, with a particular soft spot for Maddie. I made the mistake of reading the last few pages just before the school run - bit of a red eyed collection that was! I also love the cover of this book.
Oct 23, 2016 Ann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay but not a patch on her other books such as the Memory Tree.
Half and Half

There were parts of this book that were boring and slow and parts that were good. I thought this book was going to be more of a mystery/thriller. It is not. I actually did not like all of the characters in the book. Shona and Ted, I thought annoying. I think the story could of been shorter. There were parts just not interesting and could of been deleted. Better editing was needed.
Vickie Richens
Mar 25, 2017 Vickie Richens rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book, bit sad in places, now to borrow some more Rowan Coleman from the library
Christina (Reading Extensively)
Rose has known more than her share of heartache. When she was a young girl her parents divorced and her father left them. Even before he left, he was so absorbed in his work that he often forgot she was there. After he leaves, her mother falls into a deep depression, eventually committing suicide. Then at the tender age of seventeen, Rose meets and falls in love with Richard, a man who is several years her senior but he swoops in like her knight in shining armor. Soon however she realizes that s ...more
Hannah Fielding
Sep 13, 2013 Hannah Fielding rated it really liked it
Dearest Rose is a touching, sentimental, captivating story about lost family, lost time, forgiveness, love and new beginnings. Brimming with strong female characters, it slowly builds up the back story of Rose, the main character, whilst describing the awful situation in which she suddenly finds herself and her young daughter late one night.

Rowan Coleman deals sensitively with emotional and often taboo subjects in her writing of this novel, providing an at times harrowing rollercoaster of a jou
Fabulous Book Fiend
Oct 01, 2012 Fabulous Book Fiend rated it really liked it
I was eagerly awaiting Rowan Coleman’s latest novel, and when it finally arrived in the post, I was in no way disappointed! To me the novel feels very different from some of her earlier offerings, if someone had told me that this was the same author who wrote ‘The Baby Group’ (my favourite of Rowan’s novels) I might not have believed them. Nevertheless, I liked Dearest Rose just as much.

The thing that stands out for me is how real the characters and the storyline seem to be. I feel as if the eve
Rea Cobb
Aug 26, 2012 Rea Cobb rated it it was amazing
I do love that moment when you hear one of your favourite authors has another book due to be released. It is no secret that one of my top authors is Rowan Coleman so when I received an early review copy of Dearest Rose I was ecstatic and I wasted no time in getting started.


'You are a remarkable woman and you deserve all the happiness, contentment and love in the world. I, for one, know that I have never met anyone quite like you.'

When Rose Pritchard turns up on the doorstep of a Cumbrian B&
Sep 27, 2012 Karen rated it it was amazing
This was my first Rowan Coleman book but certainly won't be my last. I'm not sure why but I had always perceived her books to be light and fluffy however this book couldn't be further from that. It's well written fiction which deals with some deeper issues such as abandonment and domestic abuse.

The book begins when Rose and her young daughter Maddie turn up in the middle of a rainy night at a B&B in the wilds of Cumbria. They are not made particularly welcome by the landlady, Jenny, however
Kate Berry
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 20, 2013 Laurel-Rain rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the middle of a dark and rainy night, Rose Pritchard and her seven-year-old daughter Maddie arrive at a B & B in Millthwaite, a small village that has special meaning for Rose.

Seven years ago, a man named Frasier McCleod had come to her home in Broadstairs, in Kent, in search of a painting by an artist he hoped to meet: a painting called Dearest Rose. Realizing that the man is looking for her father, John Jacobs, who abandoned her and her mother when she was just nine years old, Rose imme
Lydia Laceby
Dec 20, 2012 Lydia Laceby rated it it was amazing

Originally reviewed at Novel Escapes

I thoroughly enjoyed Dearest Rose. Complete with memorable characters, a compelling storyline that will keep you on the edge of your seat and a quaint English village, Dearest Rose is a captivating story will stay with you. I devoured the pages to discover Rose’s secret and to find out just how Rose was going to overcome her past. A novel that is not all ‘roses’, this one is definitely a hard hitting read.

I loved all the characters from her precocious daughter
Rowan Coleman uses warmth, and humor coupled with her storytelling skills to deliver a tale that is both charming and entertaining, if somewhat predictable. From the beginning, readers know that Rose Pritchard is an anxiety ridden woman due in large part to her marital circumstance. After ten years of marriage, she is anxious to escape her abusive husband so that she and her young daughter can be free. She is equally consumed with the idea of being loved, hence her preoccupation with a man, met ...more
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the run away wife 1 3 Jul 12, 2014 09:29AM  
  • The Happy Endings Book Club
  • The Consequences (The Affair, #2)
  • Dear Thing
  • His Favorite Regret
  • The Back-Up List (The Back-Up List, #1)
  • Rewired (Progress, #3)
  • The Adoption
  • The Pieces We Keep
  • Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes
  • Sweet Expectations (Union Street Bakery #2)
  • Sweet Nothings
  • Married By Christmas
  • The Two Week Wait
  • No Place Like Home (Includes: La Vie en Roses, #1.5)
  • Uncorked (Uncorked, #1)
  • The Teashop on the Corner
  • The House of Memories
  • What I Did On My Holidays
Rowan Coleman lives with her husband, and five children in a very full house in Hertfordshire. She juggles writing novels with raising her family which includes a very lively set of toddler twins whose main hobby is going in the opposite directions. When she gets the chance, Rowan enjoys sleeping, sitting and loves watching films; she is also attempting to learn how to bake.

Rowan would like to liv
More about Rowan Coleman...

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