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Lord of the Far Island
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Lord of the Far Island

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  2,364 ratings  ·  135 reviews

The past is never far behind.…

Ellen Kellaway, orphaned at age five, was raised by wealthy cousins, but was never allowed to forget that her every advantage was owed to the charity of others. However, when the son of a powerful London family asks for her hand in marriage, her world is opened up to untold wealth and social position. She never imagined that such an unlikely d

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Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 12th 1982 by Ivy Books (first published 1975)
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3.74  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,364 ratings  ·  135 reviews


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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Lord of the Far Island is an older Gothic mystery/romance by the prolific Victoria Holt.

Ellen Kellaway is the poor orphaned relative taken in by wealthier relatives, who never let her forget her place. She's (reluctantly) on track to become a governess when she's swept off her feet by Phillip, the attractive son of a neighboring family. We're way too early in the book for a Happily Ever After, though, and sure enough, disaster strikes. Luckily for Ellen, a relative of her father suddenly and con
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Wanda
***2017 Summer Lovin’ Reading List***

I think this may have been the very first romance novel that I ever read in my life, at around age 11 or 12. I remember how much I loved the book at that age and that is probably influencing my rating today.

Talk about Gothic! A heroine who is an orphan, living with distant family members as a Poor Relation? Check! Beautiful & spunky? Check! Mysterious goings-on? Check! Subtly threatening handsome man with secrets who arrives in the nick of time to save
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Tweety
Jun 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All Gothic fans
Recommended to Tweety by: Dorcas

Just as good as I remember!

Ellen Kellaway is an orphan taken in by her Aunt's good will, and for no other reason. She grows up as the poor relation always knowing, and dreading the day when she will have to go out and become a governess. But one day changes everything and now Ellen is marrying into a wealthy family.

Ellen, is not sure but that she has made a mistake in excepting Philips proposal. Why they hardly know each other! Unfortunately,Ellen doesn't know how to back out gracefully.

Then Ph
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Regan Walker
Sep 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: victorian
A Mystery set on an Island off Cornwall

I love Victoria Holt’s romances and every now and then pick one up as a “pallet cleanser”. While more a mystery than romantic suspense, there is a lot of intrigue here.

As always, it’s written from the first person. And presumably it’s a Victorian. Ellen Kellaway, orphaned at age five, was a “poor relation” raised by wealthy cousins. Plagued by the same terrible dream, she lives in a family where she is never allowed to forget that her fortunate circumstance
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Lori
Nov 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jane
Jan 23, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ellen Kellaway, was alone in the world when she was just five years-old. Her mother’s wealthy cousins took her in, and raised her alongside their own daughter, Esme. But they never let her forget that her every advantage was owed to the charity of others. And that while Esme was destined for a great marriage, she would have to go out into the world when she came of age, and earn her living as a governess.

Ellen didn’t like that at all. She appreciated what was being done for her, but she had no i
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Misfit
Jul 11, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Raised by a wealthy distant cousin after the death of her mother, Ellen Kellaway is forever reminded that she is the Poor Relation. Resigned to her eventual fate as a governess, she is suddenly taken by surprise when childhood friend Phillip Carrington declares his love and proposes a whirlwind marriage, much to the chagrin of Cousin Agatha who was counting on wealthy Phillip marrying her daughter Esmeralda. Curiously, Phillip's family is thrilled with the match to a girl with nary a penny to he ...more
Rachel
Jan 03, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
BJ Rose
Ellen has had the same terrifying dream almost her entire life. She sees a room with red curtains, and the dreams progressively reveal a little more each time and give her the feeling of something terrible about to happen. The room exists nowhere in her life as a Poor Relation, the orphan of a mysterious marriage that no one will talk about. Then her life changes for the better with a marriage proposal, which unfortunately didn't end in marriage (view spoiler) ...more
Suspense Magazine
Feb 12, 2010 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed this book. Much like Janet Evanovich, it was just a fun read. It was one of those books you like to curl up with for pure entertainment. I liked that you didn’t find out the whole story until the very end. It was done so well, you didn’t even know there would be surprises…and there were many.
Ellen Kellaway, the “poor relation” to cousin Agatha and her husband Josiah, was never allowed to forget how she got to live in the lap of luxury, even though she never got to touch it per s
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Phil Syphe
May 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The plot works well and many scenes are vividly portrayed. Although certain outcomes were predictable, owing to the author “recycling” storylines from several of her previous works, certain revelations did surprise me.

The characters are all well-drawn, especially the heroine of the piece.

As usual with Ms Holt much of this novel revolves around a long suspenseful build-up to a climax that's over too soon. I often feel that this author doesn't squeeze the full potential out of dramatic/exciting/fr
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Elise Hedlund
Jul 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was my first Victoria Holt book, and it was amazing! Ellen was an amazing character; so captivating. I felt like I was in the book with her. I think this book was more interesting near the end, where things started to speed up. It definitely didn't end the way I thought it was going to, but I was even more satisfied with the ending than I would have been otherwise. It also kept me interested all the way through. I would totally recommend this book!
Marcia Lynn McClure
Jan 28, 2009 rated it really liked it
Another book by "Vickie" is back in print! Hallelujah!

Ellen Kellaway, orphaned at age five, was raised by wealthy cousins, but was never allowed to forget that her every advantage was owed to the charity of others. However, when the son of a powerful London family asks for her hand in marriage, her world is opened up to untold wealth and social position. She never imagined that such an unlikely dream would come true.
Nancy
Mar 15, 2008 rated it really liked it
I read all of Victoria Holt mystery/romance books in my 30s. Holt books are a higher caliber of romance fiction than something like Harlequins. Historically accurate. Good recreational reading with something to keep you turning pages.
Neja
Dec 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: my-childhood
Books written by Victoria Holt are so cheesy, but sometimes that's exactly what you need. I've read a loooot of her books when I was 14/15 years old..that was the last time I've read them. I absolutely loved them at the time. I'm thinking of reading one of her books just for the old times sake! =)
4cats
Nov 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: own
I always like to read Victoria Holt, gothic/mystery/with a touch of romance (but not too much)!
Catherine Meza
Jun 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Authentic, old-school, romantic suspense. An island, a castle, stormy seas, secret passageways, a dungeon, mysterious relatives, brooding dark handsome men, and, of course a plucky and beautiful heroine with deep blue eyes and long black hair. Sounds like schlock, but it's the original, not a thousand imitations. Very well done Read it with a box of chocolates.
Maia
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018
this was dreadful, wooden prose, unbelievable, but gets that bad, was okay, one third through. Worst book i've finished - because i finished it. Even though you know how it's going to end, you have to find out, you can't dnf it! But not again.
barrieboy
Oct 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
A nicely entertaining novel set in Victorian London and Cornwall about a young lady from a poor family who's apparently living a very charmed life, despite one or two setbacks here and there! And there's no foul language...because good books don't need it!
Diane Wachter
Jul 11, 2019 rated it liked it
RDCB-M, V#5 - 1975, read 6/12/76. Fiction, mystery, romance. An orphan girl, taken in by her aunt resigns herself to the lackluster life of a governess, but is surprised by the love of a wealthy man. But things aren't what they seem, and she is in danger. 3 ☆'s = Good.
Hannah
Jul 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Hadn't read a Victoria Holt book in decades and was happy that I decided to give it another try. The book was engrossing, but the ending felt a bit thrown together. I could see how she built up to it, but it was just abrupt.
Jodi
Apr 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Quick and enjoyable read with a lot of twists. I didn't see the ending coming until it hit me in the face. I'm glad Ellen found love and family at last!
Jen
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Feisty MC, love interest that's pushy but not a total asshole, exciting mystery all the way through. Not too bad. Loved revisiting this about 12 years after the first read.
Carrie Dalby
Enjoyable read. Great settings.
Carolyn Tye
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book. Just when I thought I had it figured out, there was another plot twist. Highly recommended.
NanC
Jul 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great writing - suspenseful - family secrets and intrigue.
Gail
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading Victoria Holt when I was younger. My mother and I both enjoyed her books. Rereading them once in awhile is a blast from the past!
Marci
Mar 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Well. I didn't care for this book. The dialogue was unrealistic, the main character drove me crazy, and some of the other characters I just really didn't like. The only reason I gave it two stars instead of one is I didn't guess the plot twist...so kudos for that.
Mary
Mar 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read this book primarily because she was one of my Mother's favorite authors. I read her as a teenager, but not since. I really enjoyed it. It was romantic, suspenseful, and fun. Lots of interesting characters and some great images of an island off the coast of England.
Dorine
Also posted at my blog, TBR Mountain Range - come for a visit :)

A master storyteller, Victoria Holt transports us from London to the coast of Cornwall in a classic gothic romantic suspense, bringing back fond memories of her books read throughout the years.

How I love re-experiencing the type of books I loved as a teenager. For those of us who read Victoria Holt’s books during the years they were first published, they sometimes become how we compare all others like them. Even if we haven’t read t
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