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Season of Storms

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  7,535 ratings  ·  755 reviews
When Celia Sands arrives at a remote Italian villa to star in the first performance of a deceased playwright's masterpiece, she is instantly drawn to the mysteries surrounding the play -- and to her compelling, compassionate employer.
Paperback, 436 pages
Published August 1st 2001 by Jove (first published 2001)
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ Try one of Mary Stewart's books, like Nine Coaches Waiting or Madam, Will You Talk? They're old-fashioned romantic suspense novels. I think many of he…moreTry one of Mary Stewart's books, like Nine Coaches Waiting or Madam, Will You Talk? They're old-fashioned romantic suspense novels. I think many of her books are even better than Kearsley's.(less)
Brittany It's not a romance in terms of something you'd find in the romance section. There's definitely some aspects of different people and their relationship…moreIt's not a romance in terms of something you'd find in the romance section. There's definitely some aspects of different people and their relationships, but it's more about the family's mysterious past and everyone's involvement with the performance. (less)
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Average rating 3.69  · 
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Season of Storms by Susanna Kearsley is a pleasant read if you enjoy suspense novels with a dash of romance and a side helping of spiritualism (Tarot cards, séances and spirits). It's set in the lovely area of Lake Garda, Italy.


Celia Sands is a struggling 22 year old British actress who gets a break: the chance to star in a play in Italy, directed by one of the two men who is a father figure to her. Celia hesitates to take this on for a couple of reasons: She's being required to use her real n
Oct 01, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: gothics
I didn't think I'd ever meet a Kearsley book that I didn't much like, but sadly, "Season of Storms" was it. Don't get me wrong, it was well written like all Kearsley books, and highly evocative of Mary Stewart with lovely place descriptions. The characters were ok, and the ending had a twist that I wasn't expecting, which was nice.

But I wasn't very interested in the plot involving a young stage actress reprising the main lead in a play written for another young stage actress (with the exact same
This is not Susanna Kearsley’s best work, but it is a refuge, a break and a bit of fun. Set in Italy, with lucious and detailed descriptions, a bit of a mystery, and a very subtle romance, it made me think of Mary Stewart without feeling like an imitation, or even derivative for that matter.

Image result for il vittoriale lake garda photos

This beautiful villa was owned by a poet on Lake Garda in Italy and serves as the inspiration for the setting for this novel. Kearsley describes it so well that you feel that you are walking its corridors and
Oct 12, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle

This novel is the story of Celia Sands, a young actress given the lead role in a play written by Italian poet and playright Galeazzo D'Ascanio some seventy years previously. The play - Il Prezzo - was inspired by D'Ascanio's muse and lover, an English actress also named Celia Sands. (The actresses are not related). The first Celia disappeared on the night before the play was due to have its first performance and D'Ascanio's grandson has decided to recreate the play in the outdoor theatre built i
This is a bit different from Kearsley's other books, but I still enjoyed it once it got going. I could tell it's one of her earlier works. The past timeline doesn't mesh with the modern one very much. It's not well developed at all, but is presented just through occasional flashbacks. These answer questions for the reader rather than driving towards something that needs to be discovered in the present.

The mystery and all the drama are in the modern time, so this reads more like a contemporary r
Kate Forsyth
This is my sixth novel by Susannah Kearsley, who writes gentle romantic suspense novels that move back and forth between contemporary and historical times. As you all know, I love a good parallel narrative, particularly if it also has a bit of love and danger thrown into the mix. Add a touch of magic, as Susannah Kearsley often does, and I’m a happy camper.

Season of Storms is not her strongest novel. It hasn't challenged The Rose Garden or A Desperate Fortune or Mariana for top-ranking in my aff
Apr 03, 2015 rated it liked it
I LOVE Susanna Kearsley. LOVE her. This, I did not love. I can echo most of the other low-star reviews: slow start/awkward pacing; forcing a novel into 5 acts; uneven use of paranormal elements, etc. However, I will focus on my main beefs: characters and romance. Warning: Minor spoilers may be ahead.

Biggest problem: Celia. I realize this one of Kearsley's older works, but Celia could have walked straight out of a 1978 Janet Dailey Harlequin. She's in her very early 20s, beautiful and talented bu
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
This was so boring. And yet it was boring in an interesting way, because I thought Season of Storms had all the familiar Kearsley elements, but in paper doll form, as if the characters were cutouts tacked onto landscapes, without that final touch to make them live.

I can get more specific and point out that the past was very (very) poorly developed and barely integrated with the present; that the conflict and the villain were choreographed from page one; that the characterization was too slight
Oct 25, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Celia The First, a famous actress in the early 1900s, becomes a notorious Italian playwright's muse and mistress, but disappears right before the opening night of the play he wrote for her. Her vanishing act remains unsolved. Decades later, Celia The Second, a relatively unknown actress, is offered the lead role in that same play by the playwright's grandson. (That's some lucky and clever marketing on the grandson's part, no?) Celia The Second is ambivalent about the opportunity... at first
One of Kearsley's earlier books, all set in the modern time. (Except it's 17 years old, so it seems all quaint and stuff. SIGH.)

The love story needed more development, but I liked the acting stuff and the family stuff. And all the characters except the ones I wasn't supposed to like.
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, romance
There’s so much about reading Susanna Kearsley that reminds me of reading Mary Stewart’s work. Something about the sense of place (this is so firmly Italy, and the house and its grounds are so easy to imagine), the female heroine, the romance… Except it’s better, because it steers away from some of the colonial and sexist attitudes that were still pretty firmly entrenched in Mary Stewart’s work, despite her independent and reasonably proactive heroines.

And this book especially won me over, becau
Rio (Lynne)
In the 1920's an actress, Celia Sands became the lover and muse of the playwright Galeazza D'Ascanio. He built the beautiful Il Piacere for her and wrote a play for her to star in . The night before she was supposed to take stage she disappeared. This book is different than the last two Kearsley books I read. This one isn't about time travel or connections with people of the past (well, not sort of.) In this one D'Ascanio's grandson Alex resurrects the play his Grandfather wrote and Celia Sands ...more
Diane Lynn
Jun 28, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buddy read with Jeannette

A lot of mystery and a bit of suspense made this a very good story. It was very different from other books I've read by Susanna Kearsley in that the story set in the past was almost nonexistent. At first I missed the historical part but then the characters and all the mysteries grew on me. I was able to figure out all of the mysteries because the clues are there but that didn't matter because Kearsley's writing always makes the journey so enjoyable. I wasn't sure I would
Apr 15, 2011 marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
When you're skimming before page 50, you know a DNF isn't far away. I so want to like Kearsley, but apart from Every Secret Thing it just ain't happening :-( ...more
Celia Sands is an actress who is invited to take part in a production of a play that's been labeled cursed; written by Galeazzo D'Ascanio in the early 1900s for his mistress, also named Celia Sands, the play has never been successfully produced since the earlier Celia's mysterious disappearance just before its premiere. Now, D'Ascanio's grandson wants to put on the play at Galeazzo's villa in northern Italy, but when Celia arrives there, strange things begin to happen. Though I liked the charact ...more
Nov 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
The premise was interesting enough to keep me reading, but ultimately this book fell flat. I learned about 50 pages in that I could skim or skip the lengthy descriptions of setting and not miss anything important. The characters were one dimensional. Each character was introduced with his or her character flaw and/or quirk and then maintained that personality throughout the book. No changes, no surprises. The villain is the villain, the kind fatherly figure is the kind fatherly figure, the myste ...more
Jan 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Since the time I posted this review on Amazon in 2011, almost all of Kearsley's novels have become available in e-book. That wasn't the case then, so I have a lot of paperbacks of her books on my shelves.)

I started with Kearsley's The Winter Sea and now can't seem to stop. Only availability and used book prices are keeping me from sweeping up all things written by Susanna Kearsley/Emma Cole. If you were a big fan of Mary Stewart some years ago, as I was, Kearsley's books will appeal to you very
Christy B
Jan 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, italy, fiction
Season of Storms is my third Susanna Kearsley novel, and it was another good one.

During early 1900s Italy, playwright Galeazzo D'Ascanio, living at his villa Il Piascere writes a play for his love, actress Celia Sands. Only to have her disappear the night before the play's premiere.

In the modern day, another actress named Celia Sands (no relation to the first) is offered the part in the play written for Celia the first, a play that has yet to see the light of day. The play will be staged by D'As
Jun 07, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars...

Excellent book and start of my 2015 reading!

This book is a re-issue of one written earlier in her career, 2001 I think. It follows a different path than most of her books, and it doesn't have a time travel element per se. Written in a modern gothic style, it is worded eloquently and wonderfully. I sound like a fangirl, and that I am!
I see that many didn't enjoy it as much as I did, and I hate that. It's a great book. The mysteries in the storyline aren't that hard to figure out, but
Mar 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 4.5 stars

Wow. Susanna Kearsley books just keep getting better and better.

This book was a real page turner for me, and I loved that the element of suspense was at the forefront. There are less of the historical details in the alternative storyline in this one, in fact there is less of the alternative story line period than there usually is, but it really suits this story and it's really well done.

If you want a gentle, well written romance with Gothic overtones, and a "mystery" with a nic
4.5 Stars
I enjoyed this book. I would have liked to have had the paranormal element be more prominent. I also would have liked more of the romantic element and the dark and mysterious hero. This started slow and was slow to build, with the ending feeling a bit rushed for me. However, I especially liked the aspect of the theater production inserted in this gothic story. I didn't have the strong emotional reaction that I generally get from this author's books, but I was looking for a gothic type o
SOS Aloha
Jul 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Storms make trees take deeper roots. - Dolly Parton

SEASON OF STORMS was first published in 2001. Sourcebooks rereleased this title with the following note from Susanna:

This book was first published when emails were rare and nobody I knew owned a cell phone. to update the story's technology would have unraveled the story itself, so I've left the things the way I first wrote them, and hope you'll indulge me.

I won this book last summer during a Sourcebooks promotion. Although I enjoyed other books
Jan 29, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: library-books
This is tough. Not the typical Susanna Kearsley work by any stretch of the imagination. I thought it was perhaps her first novel, but that was Marianna, which was, in spite of my lack of enthusiasm for it in comparison to The Winter Sea and the exquisite The Rose Garden, vastly superior to this.

I think the device of trying to fit the story into the structure of the 5 acts of the play caused the real problem. The entire first act trip through Venice was dull. What little foreshadow there was didn
Season of Storms - G
Kearsley, Susanna
The author weaves two stories in one. One is about a turn of the century actress, Celia Sands, who mysteriously disappeared, during a torrid affair with her wealthy, married Italian lover, who wrote a play for her. She never had an opportunity to perform the leading role in her lover's masterpiece, however, due to her untimely disappearance. The main story line is about a present day actress of the same name, though no relation, who is called upon to play the
Rachel Hollis
Jun 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Susanna is one of my favorite authors ever so it's no surprise that I love this because I love everything she does… that being said, I didn't anticipate being totally freaked out by the ghost story angle. At one point I actually teared up because something scared me so badly. If you're easily scared, don't let me detour you, I'm probably just a giant weenie!

I loved that I got something totally different out of this story than I have out of her other works.
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
4.5 stars
Like all of the Susanna Kearsley books that I've read this one really drew me in, so beautifully written with such a strong sense of place and people.
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've neglected Susanna Kearsley's books for a while, and I find myself very glad to have got back to them. They are very much my kind of books - a modern story, an historical link with a touch of the paranormal, a light romance and a bit of a mystery to solve. They are also very, very reminiscent of Mary Stewart's books, although those are lacking the mild supernatural/paranormal facet Kearsley tends to include.

For some reason I haven't quite identified, this one felt even more "Mary Stewart" to
Sep 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Susanna Kearsley and Lucinda Riley are my "sail away" books. Need something more challenging next. But love both authors.
Jacinda Literature Babe
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you NetGalley, Simon & Schuster and Ms. Susanna Kearsley for the opportunity to read this Advanced Readers Copy.

Historical Fiction with a spooky twist is what this book is all about. A mix of historical adventure with current day sleuthing!
We meet our heroine "Celia Sands", an actress who is offered the lead part in a play that was originally written for her namesake... a beautiful actress who mysteriously disappeared many years before.

The author takes you away with her descriptions of his
Apr 16, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is hard to rate. I’d really give it more of a 3.5 leaning towards a four. The first hundred pages were slow reading, whereas her other books were engaging from the beginning. I almost put the book down at about page 70, but knowing how much I enjoyed all her other books I slogged on. It was well worth it. The mystery and romance were entertaining. There wasn’t as much history as her other books, but the setting and subject matter made up for that.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Mar 08, 2015 07:56PM  
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New York Times, USA Today, and Globe and Mail bestselling author Susanna Kearsley is a former museum curator who loves restoring the lost voices of real people to the page, interweaving romance and historical intrigue with modern adventure.

Her books, published in translation in more than 20 countries, have won the Catherine Cookson Fiction Prize, RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards, a RITA Award, and Nat

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