I wish to thank Raquel Elias of Serpentine Books for inviting me to read and review this book.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Dream Job. Fresh Start. Big Mistake.
When Bella Black arrives in a sleepy Wiltshire village, it seems like the perfect place for a new start: a lovely home, exciting job and an attractive colleague or two to take her mind off her recent divorce.
When people start disappearing, she realises she holds the key to a mystery bigger than she could have ever imagined.
Who is really pulling the strings at the secretive OAK Institute?
Can anyone be trusted?
Will Bella make the right choices before it’s too late?
‘The inspiration for the book came from witnessing commuters helping a woman who’d fallen down the stairs at Paddington station, intermingled with wondering what was behind some grand stone gateposts that I used to drive past in Wiltshire. Those disparate things swirled around in the back of my mind and came out as the secret OAK Institute which is at the core of the book.’ —Heather Barnett
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/35NWnGu
https://bit.ly/333Ovz2 (the bookshop org)
Bella black doesn’t think she is anything special, but she is recently divorced and could do with a fresh start. When she is offered a new job, away from the hustle and bustle of her old life, she jumps at it. Oak Institute resides behind massive gates and feels like a Tardis to Bella, who always gets lost just going to her own office.
What is very disturbing, is the reaction of some people in the village where she lives, when she says she works there. What begins as a welcome ends in an abrupt departure and warning to leave Oak Institute before its too late!
This story pulled me in with its hidden secrets and mysterious goings-on, so it was impossible to put down. I liked Bella from the start who is willing to push herself way past her comfort zone to help other people, even if it means risking her new position at Oak Institute. Bella does have some lighter moments with her instant attraction to someone at work.
It is such an unusual story, an intriguing plot with some interesting characters. The pace changes in the last quarter of the story, as it intensifies. The puzzles of the past begin to fit with present-day as everything comes together. A complete story that winds up all the ends very well.
I wish to the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Heather Barnett gained a degree in English and French from the University of Leeds and has written ever since: from copywriting to stand-up comedy and sketches. She is now focusing on writing novels. Heather’s influences span Jane Austen and Douglas Adams at one end of the alphabet through to PG Wodehouse at the other.
Heather’s debut novel, Acts of Kindness, is an uplifting, light-hearted mystery. It was inspired by witnessing commuters helping a woman who’d fallen down the stairs at Paddington station; intermingled with wondering what was behind some grand stone gateposts that she used to drive past in Wiltshire.
Her second novel, Lord Seeks Wife, is a romantic comedy and will be published summer 2021.
Aside from writing, Heather’s interests are classic literature, cats and comedy.
Heather is head of marketing at an agency near Oxford and lives by the river Kennet in Berkshire.