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A Winter's Tale

3.89  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,572 Ratings  ·  101 Reviews
A charming romantic comedy about a hard-up single mum inheriting a stately home – and a host of headaches – The perfect novel for curling up with during the long winter nights.Sophy Winter is not your typical Lady of the Manor….When she unexpectedly inherits Winter's End - a crumbling mansion in the beautiful Lancashire countryside - it seems like all Sophy's prayers have ...more
Paperback, 405 pages
Published 2008 by Avon
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Twelve Days of Christmas by Trisha AshleyThe Night Before Christmas by Scarlett BaileyIt Started With A Kiss by Miranda DickinsonThe Gift by Cecelia AhernWith Love at Christmas by Carole Matthews
Christmas Chick Lit
23rd out of 231 books — 316 voters
Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie KinsellaConfessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie KinsellaThe Undomestic Goddess by Sophie KinsellaTwenties Girl by Sophie KinsellaRemember Me? by Sophie Kinsella
Have You Read This Chick-lit?
263rd out of 868 books — 898 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jacob Proffitt
Sep 15, 2015 Jacob Proffitt rated it liked it
Shelves: romance, chaste
Enjoyable, but not my favorite by Trisha Ashley. Sophy and Seth spend so much time completely clueless about each other that I had a hard time simply enjoying the rest of the story. And the rest of the cast is more mundane than I'm used to in her books—less magical, but also less wacky or (lovably) goofy. Seth is brooding (which prompts a hilarious reference to Cold Comfort Farm but is otherwise simply . . . broody). Sophy is determined. Yes, you see them enjoy themselves together, mostly bicker ...more
Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page)
I'm very surprised with all of the high ratings that this book has. I found A Winter's Tale incredibly dull and unexciting. Whilst the idea was good, a lot more could have been done with the plot - nothing seemed to happen that made me want to read on - it took a lot of effort not to give up on this book completely. I found that the narrative was very well written but my main issue was that I could not connect with any of the characters, they weren't formed well enough and as I've already mentio ...more
The concept of the story was good, the execution of it, however, left much to be desired.

Sophy was annoyingly proper with characters that didn't deserve her kindness, she was also even more annoyingly clueless about some things but rather on the ball with others - no consistency in her character.

The fact that Sophy and the rest of the family just let slide the behaviors and actions of Jack was increasingly frustrating throughout the book, and then in the end when they once again let everything
Annabel Krantz
Sep 07, 2013 Annabel Krantz rated it really liked it
This wintery novel is an excellent example of the best kind of chick lit. All the required elements are there; a heroine undergoing a transformation (be it in life, appearance, location...), an ounce of mystery, an unlikely love interest, some crazy family members, and a plot that offers something unique and different to the thousands of other chick lit novels out there. Trisha Ashley's tale of Sophy Winter and her sudden inheritance of a stately home in the English countryside is a fantastic re ...more
Mar 12, 2012 Julie rated it did not like it
Sometimes I read books and I really can't understand how they can get through the editing and publishing process and still end up in the state they're in.

The plot was fairly interesting and the write used some good devices to keep the reader hooked. The references to an Elizabethan legacy and hidden secrets were intriguing. The setting felt like something new and interesting. But it was let down on so many other levels.

I have many a gripe with the writing style and characterisation. It's in the
Jan 31, 2012 Heidi rated it liked it
A Winter's Tale by Trisha Ashley will be of interest to those liking a read about garden restoration, old medieval houses, Shakespeare, witchcraft or just light romance.

Sophy Winter has just been displaced after her job as housekeeper and PA to a lady in a large country estate in Scotland ends only to find she has inherited her own grandfather's country house Winter's End. Her grandfather had placed the estate in debt and allowed the house to deteriorate as he fulfilled his passion to restore th
Oct 26, 2011 Pixie rated it did not like it
A charming romantic comedy about a hard-up single mum inheriting a stately home - and a host of headaches - The perfect novel for curling up with during the long winter nights. Sophy Winter is not your typical Lady of the Manor!. When she unexpectedly inherits Winter's End - a crumbling mansion in the beautiful Lancashire countryside - it seems like all Sophy's prayers have been answered. She eagerly swaps life as an impoverished housekeeper in favour of her own team of staff. But Sophy quickly ...more
I’ve read book by Trisha Ashley before and I love it. It’s enjoyable and I had so much fun reading it. It’s definitely the same with this one. It’s a perfect read during this winter time. I took a longer time reading this, taking it during my winter trip and finally had the chance finishing this. I love the setting, I love the determination of the main character, Sophy Winter. I love the mystery, the history behind her family’s story. If anyone is looking for a light reading this winter, this is ...more
Claire Simpson
Aug 22, 2011 Claire Simpson rated it really liked it
I read this book in an afternoon. There's something about Ashley that I really like, her writing is relaxed and comfortable, and she maked you care about the places as much as the characters. I find her settings are always wonderful, and in this case the gorgeous house was perfect. I loved the diary extracts throughout it, which gave the whole story a different, slightly darker feel. And as always the minor characters were the best - from the hippy mother (a theme in Ashelys work?) to the crazy ...more
Seung Min Baek
Aug 30, 2015 Seung Min Baek rated it did not like it
Shelves: summer-reading
A Winter's Tale is a novel by Trisha Ashley, that would not be recommended for various reasons. Initially, it contains a confusing beginning, middle, and end. The whole story is built up on a simple fact that Sophy, the main character gets to work at a mansion. Additionally, it doesn't engage the readers to read more because the writing is very repetitive and doesn't flow on like it should. Subsequently, it is like any other love story that anyone could write. Nothing is really special about thi ...more
Dec 30, 2015 Briana rated it it was amazing
It doesn't feel right giving chick lit five stars but ok compared to a lot that I have read I really enjoyed this one. SO if compared to other chick lit for me was a five. SO why? Well the story line isn't to different from your standard lines girl meets two boys which will she end with and it is very obvious from start. I liked that the character was older and not late 20-early 30 which seems to be the usual case. She was also stood up for herself and didn't become a simpering idiot at any sign ...more
Feb 09, 2016 Liz rated it really liked it
An easy, enjoyable read!

The cover is slightly misleading as 'Winter' refers to the surname of the family rather than the time of year!
Elizabeth (Miss Eliza)
*Special Content only on my blog, Strange and Random Happenstance during Downton Denial (February 2016)

Sophy Winter spent her formative years living in her family's stately home, Winter's End, until she was one day whisked away by her hippie mother without a backward glance. Her life then took on an itinerant feel, never really settling down until she got married and got pregnant. The pregnancy scared the husband off and she made do as a single mother working in great estates like the one she gr
Jan 27, 2016 Karen rated it it was amazing
When I first grabbed the book and read the Amazon write-up I was expecting a typical chick lit. Girl meets boy ... and another boy ... and has to choose and blah blah blah cozy cozy mushy mushy. I was hoping that the crumbling mansion and Shakespeare bit would help make the mushy mushy a little less tedious. Now I'm wondering if whoever wrote the bit for Amazon had actually really read the book?!?

They did get the basics right -- Sophy inherited Winter's End.

It was her grandfather's house and sh
Dec 26, 2011 localfreak rated it liked it
Shelves: humour, light
A light frothy happy read was what I sought when I picked up a copy and I certainly got that. The humour is very good and the main protagonist a very engaging character, along with the host of varying batty eccentric relatives.

I enjoyed the whole exciting story of Alys Blezzard, the family's own historical witch, and the mysterious "treasure" that Jack so wanted. As someone who has spent a veritable lifetime being the tourist around NT properties, too, the book created some delightful and recog
Anindita Bhattacharya
A friend gave it to my father last February… but he didn’t like it. In fact he discouraged me when I started fiddling with it… somehow I liked it. Liked it very much. Basically a romantic novel. “Sophy”, a jobless, homeless single mother of 38 years, certainly inherits a manor. The manor, “Wynter’s End” is actually a white elephant…in almost dilapidated condition. She also inherits a huge bank loan… She is supposed to sale it to her handsome cousin “Jack” but before taking the final decision she ...more
May 23, 2014 Kim rated it really liked it
This is the first book in a collection of stories revolving around characters living in the fictitious Lancashire village of Sticklepond. It is a warm-hearted tale of Sophy Winter who unexpectedly inherits her grandfather's rather stately home, Winter's End. There are a couple of love interest's, of course, a jealous distant cousin who feels aggrieved at not getting his hands on the estate, a surly, brooding gardener, as well as a hint or two of magic which is a theme throughout all these storie ...more
Ruth Taylor
Jan 08, 2016 Ruth Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great romantic story about the inheritance of an old house.

I loved this book. A great start to my years reading. Sophy goes from nothing to inheriting a beautiful house and this is her story of how she fell in love again with her childhood home and makes it her own. Along the way uncovering family secrets and falling in and out of love and saving the future of Winters End. Can't wait to read some of Trisha Ashley's other works.
Karen Cockerill
May 14, 2014 Karen Cockerill rated it liked it
Recommends it for: heather walls
Shelves: fun-easy-reading
I enjoyed this book. It's just a cute, light easy read which is beautifully written. Great book to pack in for a beach holiday or a rainy day or just a 'lift me up' happy read.

The story line is about Sophy Winter who in the past worked in stately homes and now inherits one of her own. See how her past profession prepared her for her current reality.
May 30, 2014 Katie rated it it was amazing
I absolutely love this book! I've read it so many times, my copy is falling apart! If I am bored, this is the book I turn to. I love the story and the characters, especially as I have family links to Pendle Hill and Alice Nutter!
Dec 15, 2015 Emma rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Unfortunately not the wintry novel you're probably hoping this is, Sophy spends at least 60% of the whole book (the joys of kindle reading) cleaning Winter's End. Not worth the time of day I'm afraid!
Dec 29, 2015 claudia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing book couldn't put utbdown

This book was amazing it began as a mystery but it went on to being a romantic novel for the last half of the book. Worth 5 stars definitely.
Jun 24, 2011 Heffalumpi rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2011
I really enjoyed this book and to be honest it is not my usual cup of tea so to speak. The book has some good characters and is centred in one place so is very easy to follow, and can be picked up and put down without losing the plotline of the story.

I did find some of the characters extremely predictable and shallow, and this annoyed me a little as I could see what was going to happen next at times which did spoil some of the plot. I also felt that the end of the book was a bit rushed and could
Jennifer Howorth
Nov 03, 2015 Jennifer Howorth rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book loved the characters, and got the feel of them well written did not get bored and it did not drag out a good read.
Mar 01, 2015 Tanesha rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Just couldn't get into this one. The main character was a nitwit and the run-on sentences were driving me crazy.
Sarah Heskins
Feb 07, 2015 Sarah Heskins rated it did not like it
I didn't read this I read about 20 pages and gave up it was crap!!!! How do u delete books off ur books read?
Jan 29, 2016 Debra rated it liked it
I enjoyed this read. I like the thought that even in the 16th century there was "girl power". The main character, Sophie, although a bit nieve at times, showed she was smarter, stronger, and more capable than people gave her credit for. She was comfortable in her own skin and I think that made her very believable and likeable.
Bubble Bath Books
Aug 28, 2013 Bubble Bath Books rated it really liked it
Bubby and Sissy at had this to say about A Winter's Tale by Trisha Ashley: This is a contemporary fiction/mystery/romance, but it is also salted with scrumptious bits of historic witchiness and magic. There's nothing we like better than a little magic sprinkled in with a touch of romance. Makes us happy. If you are looking for a light and fluffly dose of British-ness, A Winter's Tale (or for that matter, any other book by Trisha Ashley) is the book for you. 4 bubbles. Read th ...more
Lisa Houston
Dec 07, 2015 Lisa Houston rated it it was amazing
Loved it. Very nearly never read it after reading some of the reviews on here. But so glad I did. Great book
Mar 19, 2013 Suzanne rated it it was ok
I do sometimes wonder about how some books make it out the other end of the editing and publishing process. This was one of those books. Mediocre writing, caricature characters, an unbelievably silly main character who seems both flighty and resolute. Within a sentence. But the story has a certain kind of charm that could work for you on a cold Sunday afternoon or a holiday-on-the-beach read. It did for me. So if you feel like a candy-floss book, do give this a try.
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Trisha Ashley is now a full-time novelist, but she has been known to work for stained glass makers and/or plumbers. She likes to paint, eat, drink, and read literary biographies. Her previous hobbies included getting divorced and packing to move. She claims to have once actually eaten Bronte burgers at the Branwell café, but her publisher declines to verify this. She lives in North Wales.
More about Trisha Ashley...

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