Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Skylark's Secret” as Want to Read:
The Skylark's Secret
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Skylark's Secret

by
4.37  ·  Rating details ·  9,548 ratings  ·  588 reviews
Loch Ewe, 1940. When gamekeeper’s daughter Flora’s remote highland village finds itself the base for the Royal Navy’s Arctic convoys, life in her close-knit community changes forever. In defiance of his disapproving father, the laird’s son falls in love with Flora, and as tensions build in their disrupted home, any chance of their happiness seems doomed.

Decades later, Flor
...more
Kindle Edition, 315 pages
Published September 29th 2020 by Lake Union Publishing
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  9,548 ratings  ·  588 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of The Skylark's Secret
Debra
Sep 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I'll start by saying that this was my first book by Fiona Valpy and it will not be last!

This book is told in two-time frames telling the story of Flora and Lexi. Ultimately this is a book about love, family, romance, war, friendship, community, songs, secrets, loss, and learning from and about your past.

Loch Eve, 1940 Flora Gordon lives in a remote highland village in Scotland. When her village becomes the base for the Royal Navy's Arctic Convoy, life in the remote village changes forever. The L
...more
Ceecee
Sep 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lexi Gordon reluctantly returns home to Loch Ewe in the Scottish Highlands following the death of her mother Flora. Her career as a rising West End musical star is over following the loss of her voice and a failed relationship. However, she has the compensation of a beautiful baby daughter in Daisy. The story is told in alternating timelines by Lexie in 1980 and by Flora from 1939 with the outbreak of World War 2, tells the story of her love affair with lairds son Alec MacKenzie-Grant. It weaves ...more
Karren  Sandercock
Jul 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Thanks to NetGalley, Amazon Publishing UK and Fiona Valpy for my copy of The Skylark’s Secret.

Loch Ewe Scotland 1940, Flora Gordon and her father Ian live in Keeper’s Cottage in the remote North-West highland village of Aultbea and her father is the local gamekeeper. The residents of the little fishing community have a peaceful life nestled on the banks of Loch Ewe until during WW II it finds itself the main base for the Royal Navy’s Arctic convoys, suddenly the harbor is busy with naval ships a
...more
Veronica ⭐️
Jan 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
Set in the beautiful Northwest Highlands of Scotland at Loch Ewe The Skylark's Secret is an evocative read. Fiona Valpy's poetic prose bring the setting and the characters alive.

Told in multiple time frames. In 1978 we have accomplished singer Lexie Gordon return home, her career in tatters and baby in tow. Lexie has many regrets and one is not visiting her mother more before she passed away. Now she is home she wants to find out more about her father but she worries the tight-knit community won
...more
Linden
Sep 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
This novel is set in Loch Ewe, in the Scottish Highlands. Chapters alternate between two women a generation apart. Flora's story tells of her life in the village as the gamekeeper's daughter during World War II, volunteering as a Wren, and her love of the laird's son, which infuriates his snobbish father. Her daughter Lexie, who left the village to attend a prestigious theater program in London and became a West End star, returns to the village in the late 1970's with a baby, after she is reject ...more
Desiree
Another entry in the flooded field of WWII novels, The Skylark’s Secret was enjoyable enough to finish, but that’s about it. There were a couple of “surprises” in the novel, but they fell a bit flat. And somehow, rather than foreshadowing leading to a satisfying turn of events, I was often left wondering why something wasn’t resolved, only later to have the t’s crossed and i’s dotted.

If you’re someone who just can’t get enough of WWII historical fiction, then you’ll probably love it. I, however,
...more
Bonnie DeMoss
Nov 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
In the late 1970s, Lexie Gordon returns home with her daughter, Daisy, to Aultbea, a small fishing village on Loch Ewe in the Scottish Highlands. She has come to live in her family’s cottage after a vocal cord injury ended her singing career in London. Embarrassed at first that the town gossipers might judge her for her lost career or single parenthood, Lexie slowly begins to reconnect with her town. She also begins to discover, through the townspeople, secrets of her family’s past.

In 1939, Flor
...more
Karren  Sandercock
Thanks to NetGalley, Amazon Publishing UK and Fiona Valpy for my copy of The Skylark’s Secret.

Loch Ewe Scotland 1940, Flora Gordon and her father Ian live in Keeper’s Cottage in the remote North-West highland village of Aultbea and her father is the local gamekeeper. The residents of the little fishing community have a peaceful life nestled on the banks of Loch Ewe until during WW II it finds itself the main base for the Royal Navy’s Arctic convoys, suddenly the harbor is busy with naval ships a
...more
linda hole
I am a huge historical fiction fan.so i thought i would love this book. But the book did not pull om my heart strings , like i want HF books to do. But i enjoyed where the book took place the scenery was top notch. I liked the romance . Thank you to netgalley for letting me read this e arc in exchange for an honest review
Amanda
Jan 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Lexi Gordon and her beautiful daughter Daisy return to her childhood home in the Scottish Highlands, after the death of her mother Flora. Lexi had left home to attend a stage school in London, unfortunately her career as a rising musical star is over due to losing her voice.

The story alternates between Lexi and goes back to her mothers story in 1940. Flora is a young woman in love during wartime, battling to survive.

I loved this book. Fiona and Lexie are such wonderful characters and I was fully
...more
Shannon Rochester
Oct 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for my digital copy in exchange for an honest review. If I am being honest, I will tell you that I did not immediately fall in love with this book. For whatever reason, I just could not get into it and I did not engage with the characters at first. But once it all clicked into place, I fell in love with the characters, the surroundings they lived in, and the story itself. It is told by two different points of view...you have Flora living during WW2 and lo ...more
Tahera
This is the first book I have read by Fiona Valpy and I have added one more author's name to my list of authors I want to read more of.

To put it in simple words, this book was emotionally satisfying! The writing is beautiful, the characters are so well etched out, the emotions feel real, the description of the Scottish Highlands and Loch Ewe is stunning, and the dual storyline of both mother (Flora) and daughter (Lexi) told in alternating timelines moves smoothly although Flora's storyline was m
...more
Kelly
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book from NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing in exchange for an unbiased review.

The timeline alternates from 1977 back to 1939 where the past helps bring clarity to the present.

In 1980, Lexi carries her daughter Daisy on her back as she hikes the familiar hills of Loch Ewe in the Scottish Highlands. She never imagined while living her dream in the theaters of London that she would find herself back home in Artuath. Lexi returned to take care of t
...more
Susan
This book goes on my favorite shelf... beautifully written!
Alayne Emmett
Oct 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a lovely book with a dual time-line, I seem to reading a lot of those lately and I do love them!!! This particular story was set in Scotland in WW two and present day. It was a sad book in some ways, loss of lives in the war and lost loves but, it also was happy. The descriptions of Scotland brought everything to life and I could picture the loch, the mountains and even the rain!!
I do love Fiona Valpy’s books and this was no exception.
My thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for giving
...more
Renee
Beautifully written & narrated. Leisurely paced. Enjoyable!
Rose
Oct 07, 2020 rated it liked it
The Skylark's Secret by Fiona Valpy is a book with two storylines and two generations that takes place during wartime starting in 1940 in the Highlands of Scotland.

Loch Ewe, is a very remote highland village that becomes the base for the Royal Navy’s Arctic convoys.

This is as much a love story as it is a Historic Fiction

I am a fan of historic fiction, and did like how the book started off, however I found it very slow moving for me and unfortunately lost a little interest quite quickly

I have not
...more
Lisa
Nov 12, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: audio
An enjoyable read, I was especially taken with the musical elements and love of the traditional Scottish songs.
I also loved the setting which was captured beautifully.

However, this is not my style of story. There's just not enough character depth for my taste, and the romance angles take precedence even though they're not particularly interesting (IMO).
The historical elements were more interesting but there wasn't enough of them and I prefer my stories far more gritty.

I would recommend the audio
...more
Janet
Sep 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Date reviewed: September 20, 2020

When life for the entire universe and planet turns on its end and like everyone else you "have nothing to do" while your place of work is closed and you are continuing to be in #COVID19 #socialisolation, superspeed readers like me can read 300+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today.

I requested and received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review.

F
...more
histeriker
Aug 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
I love books that offer more than one thing. This book offered a great story (actually two when I think of it), historical information and descriptions of Scottland I loved. Let's start with the story. I really liked the both main characters, Lexie and her Mum Flora. They have no easy lives, but their beliefs and strengths are obvious. I love their connection to music that is well shown through out the book and that connects not only them, but also each of them and their homeland. What I liked m ...more
Jeanie
Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
NetGalley

Member Review
Cover Image: The Skylark's Secret
The Skylark's Secret
by Fiona Valpy
Pub Date: 29 Sep 2020
Review by

jeanie m, Reviewer
Last updated on 15 Jun 2020
My Recommendation
With grateful thanks to netgalley and fiona valpy for an early copy in return for an honest review.
I have read all the other books by this Author so I knew it was going to be a good one.i didn't realise how good,this is one of the most OUTSTANDING authors it felt so real as if I was actually there even down to the co
...more
E.J. Bauer
Sep 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book stands as an incredible homage to the outer Western edges of Scotland during WW2. The story of a small community coming to grips with the realities of world conflict that has settled on their doorstep is beautifully interwoven with the life of a young girl reluctantly returning to her childhood village in the late 1970s. I love the author's way with words, painting an achingly poignant picture of the highlands and its seasons and then applying a clear coat of love, loyalty and hope. An ...more
AC
Nov 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
There are some books that you can't say a ton about in a review, because it all involves spoilers. This is one of those books. It isn't to say that the details are worth skipping, because they are not. This is quite a good book about homecoming and relationships and how family members interact with one another and the world around them.

We have a protagonistic duo in this book - both daughter (to open the book) and mother (as we travel between time periods) are involved in making the story that i
...more
Nicola Short
Sep 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I could not put this book down!
The Skylark’s Secret is a duel timeline novel. Told from the view of a mother during WWII and then her daughter in the 1970’s. Sometimes duel timelines can be hard to follow, but I thoroughly enjoyed the way the author intertwined both stories.
A beautifully written story about the sacrifices mothers will make for their children. A heartwarming tale of love, loss, courage and bravery.
If you’re a fan of historical fiction that takes place during World War II, you wil
...more
Jeanne
Sep 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
The story is told in two time lines. Flora lives in Loch Ewe. Her father is the gamekeeper for the laird. She and her brother are best friend's with the laird's son, Alec, and when they grow up realize that they feel more than friends but his father is against the union. During the war the town houses a naval base so Flora works with the Wrens and Alec is a naval officer working the Arctic runs.

The second time line is the late 1970's when Lexie, Flora's daughter, comes home from London with her
...more
Shirley McAllister
Flora's Waltz

This book is a tearjerker. The book brings home the loss of loved ones during a period of war. It also is a story of secrets. It has been said that "The Truth is a Powerful Force" and I believe it is true. It is certainly true in this story.

The story is about the love between Flora and Alec, and a love story between Davy and Lexy. It's a story of war and the losses felt in the small Scottish village of Loch Ewe. The people in the town and how they gathered together in times of need
...more
Kathy
Sep 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ww2
Just my second book by this author, the other also featuring WWII, but I enjoyed this book far more.
The simplicity and sincerity fit the poignant story of a family from Scotland's Highlands and their lives as lived in the area near Loch Ewe. This was a location important during the war as a muster point for convoys of warships.
The narrative alternates between the modern day (1970's) and the war period (1940's) with one thread featuring mother and the other her daughter. I don't usually enjoy sen
...more
Sandra
Sep 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Skylark’s Secret tells the stories of Lexie Gordon, returning to her childhood home in the Highlands with her infant daughter, Daisy, and Flora, Lexie’s mother, who has recently died. The chapters alternate between Lexie’s experiences in the late 1970s as she settles back into her mother’s old cottage, and Flora’s life as the gamekeeper’s daughter and later a wren during the Second World War. The small community where Flora lived and where she raised Lexie lies on the shore of Loch Ewe, whic ...more
Sandra
Sep 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novels, fiction, scotland
The Skylark’s Secret tells the stories of Lexie Gordon, returning to her childhood home in the Highlands with her infant daughter, Daisy, and Flora, Lexie’s mother, who has recently died. The chapters alternate between Lexie’s experiences in the late 1970s as she settles back into her mother’s old cottage, and Flora’s life as the gamekeeper’s daughter and later a wren during the Second World War. The small community where Flora lived and where she raised Lexie lies on the shore of Loch Ewe, whic ...more
Jo Beth
Sep 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review: The Skylark’s Secret by Fiona Valpy

Many thanks to Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.

If you would like to skip to the chase, I liked this book a lot. See my star rating at the end of this review.

As with most historical fiction novels, I like to read the Author’s Note (Afterword) in order to be aware what is real and what is fictional as I read. For this novel, the time and place are real. The characters and story are the author’s creation. M
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: The Skylark's secret is missing its page count 4 92 Jan 21, 2021 06:46AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock
  • The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle
  • Find Me (Inland Empire, #1)
  • Chosen Ones (The Chosen Ones, #1)
  • 21 Day Thyroid Plan - Thriving With Hashimoto's
  • IOU
  • The Weight of Ink
  • Blooms of War
  • A Name Unknown (Shadows Over England, #1)
  • God Hears Her: 365 Devotions for Women by Women
  • Prayers for Prodigals: 90 Days of Prayer for Your Child
  • Uncrowned Queen: The Fateful Life of Margaret Beaufort, Tudor Matriarch
  • The Young Survivors
  • The Little Cottage in Lantern Square (Lantern Square #1-4)
  • Sisters of War
  • Anatomy , Made Simple For Artists
  • This is the Way in Dogtown
  • My Name is River
See similar books…
1,079 followers
Fiona Valpy spent seven years living in France, having moved there from the UK in 2007. She and her family renovated an old, rambling farmhouse in the Bordeaux winelands, during which time she developed new-found skills in cement-mixing, interior decorating and wine-tasting.

All of these inspirations, along with a love for the place, the people and their history, have found their way into the book
...more

News & Interviews

  Some people love books. Some people fall in love. And some people love books about falling in love. Every month our team sorts through...
26 likes · 6 comments
“I think of my mum and the Carmichaels and all those other people who lost so much in the war. They were a generation who had to get used to goodbyes. I realise how fortunate I was to be born just as the war ended. into a generation that knew only the optimism of a peace-filled future” 1 likes
“Even though it’s so painful, grief is something we have to go through sooner or later. There’s no way round it, no way to avoid it. That’s something we all learned in the war. You go through it. But if you have a friend or two to walk along that path beside you, it helps you to bear it.” 0 likes
More quotes…