29 August 2014

Solsbury Hill by Susan M. Wyler, Book review

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Riverhead Trade (April 1, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594632365
  • Also available in KINDLE format


The windswept moors of England, a grand rustic estate, and a love story of one woman caught between two men who love her powerfully—all inspired by Emily Bronte’s beloved classic, Wuthering HeightsSolsbury Hill brings the legend of Catherine and Heathcliff, and that of their mysterious creator herself, into a contemporary love story that unlocks the past.

When a surprise call from a dying aunt brings twenty-something New Yorker Eleanor Abbott to the Yorkshire moors, and the family estate she is about to inherit, she finds a world beyond anything she might have expected. Having left behind an American fiance, here Eleanor meets Meadowscarp MacLeod—a young man who challenges and changes her. Here too she encounters the presence of Bronte herself and discovers a family legacy they may share.

With winds powerful enough to carve stone and bend trees, the moors are another world where time and space work differently. Remnants of the past are just around a craggy, windswept corner. For Eleanor, this means ancestors and a devastating romantic history that bears on her own life, on the history of the novel Wuthering Heights, and on the destinies of all who live in its shadow.

Haworth, Yorkshire - Source HERE)

Emily's signature
(Photo source HERE)

My thoughts:

Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights novel has captivated the heart of generations of readers with its love triangle of Heathcliff, Catherine Earnshaw and the ever gentlemanly Edgar Linton. 

I always felt it surprising that a spinster such as Emily could have written this most explosive love story so Susan M. Wyler' Solsbury Hill was most enticing. Here was a plot set in modern days reflecting the deepest and tempestuous love story. 
However the storyteller failed to capture my attention because of her writing style which I can only describe as bumpy. 

There are similarities in the themes, motifs and symbols in both stories but in this modern version of one of the deepest loves recorded in English prose, I felt a definite disappointment. Perhaps it is because it is one of my favourite stories but neither Eleanor or her childhood friend Miles held much of my attention and I struggled to finish the story. 

That said a third protagonist named Meadowcarp with his comely and solid outlook on life made it a bit sweeter along with the colourful locale. I know very few people who are reluctant to read a good Gothic novel set in the wild Moors and despite my personal lack of enthusiasm, I suggest you check it out for yourself.

I give it 3 stars for my part.

Meet the Author:


Susan M. Wyler is a writer, a poet and historian, with advanced degrees in cultural history from UCLA and Oxford University, she’s traveled the world, speaks four languages, is a teacher of yoga and meditation, a writing teacher and an editor of fiction. Her poetry has been published in Onthebus, Spillway, and the Shenandoah Review.  And in collaboration with the inspired painter Deloss McGraw a collection of her poetry, published by University of Oklahoma. Solsbury Hill is her fourth novel, her first to be published.
Additional information can be found (HERE)
Note to Readers: This was a gift and all opinions are mine only!


  1. I enjoy a good romance set on moors in old mansions with two men both wanting the beautiful young lady, it's been done many times but always good.

    1. The plot was definitively perfect for dreaming Merle, the execution however was not what I expected.
      Give a hug to Angus will you? Mac says hello!


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