The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Next up on my to be read list was The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley. My Facebook group will be talking about the book next week so I had to read it. It was recommended by a friend who is a member of my Club, who gets to choose the themes for my Facebook group.

A quote from The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Carrie McClelland is a writer. She ventures up to Scotland to meet with her agent, Jane. On the drive to Jane’s, Carrie is compelled to visit these ruins that appear on the coast road that she happens to take on the drive up.

A quote from The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Graham Keith is a lecturer at a university in Aberdeen, a history professor at that. However, he returns home to Cruden Bay most weekends to check on his dad. Graham has a spaniel named Angus that he was walking when he first runs into Carrie.

A quote from The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Sophia Paterson is at first, a figment of Carrie’s imagination or so she thinks. She knows that one of her ancestor’s name is Sophia Paterson. But Carrie comes to find out through her research for her newest book that Sophia is her ancestor. Plus, Sophia, too, had spent time in Cruden Bay at Slains Castle.

A quote from The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

John Moray is the character that Carrie decides to pattern after Graham somewhat. He’s also the hero of her book. Sophia falls for Moray while the Jacobites are planning for the uprising in 1708.

The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Brief Summary (while trying not to give everything away)

In The Winter Sea, Carrie is writing her newest book. She had been living in France and working near the court of Saint Germain where the exiled English/ Scottish kings had been housed. But she travels to Scotland to see her agent. Jane turns Carrie’s writing on its head when she suggests that she insert a female character as a narrator.

Carrie finds Cruden Bay and falls in love. She quickly rents a cottage and moves there to work on her book, which comes to her in dreams mostly. The book is written in two parts. The numbered chapters are mostly in present day. The Roman numeraled chapters are Carrie’s writings of her book set in 1708.


This book is amazingly well written. While I don’t normally like switching timelines, this was well thought out so the story flowed seamlessly. The two timelines often had things that paralleled. I will say that I cried at the book, which is not my favorite, but it was worth it. I highly recommend reading this one.

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And in case you hadn’t figured it out, my plan for 2021 is to write a blog post for each book I read. Last year, I read 150 books. We’ll see how I do this year.

Want to see all the books I read this year? Check out my kit here!

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