Friday, 10 June 2016

The Last Days of Summer - Sophie Pembroke with Guest Post

Escape to the beautiful world of Rosewood this summer
The only feel good summer read you’ll need, The Last Days of Summer is perfect for fans of Harriet Evans, Debbie Johnson and Lucy Diamond.
Saskia has always loved Rosewood. It was her family home, her sanctuary and her memories of it are vividly alive even after two years of being absent. Never did she think she would be standing in the rose garden afraid to cross the threshold and own up to the past she had run away from.
So much about Rosewood hasn’t changed, everyone still dresses for dinner, sips cocktails on the terrace, her father cooks every delicious meal and her beloved grandfather still tells spellbinding stories. But the cold reception from her grandmother, Ellie’s complete avoidance of her and the judgmental gaze of Edward, her grandfather’s new assistant (who seems to know more than enough about her past), are all new to Kia.
All Kia needs to do is attend her grandparent’s Golden Wedding Party and make it to the train station without her secret coming out. What could possible go wrong in just one weekend?
About the Author:
Sophie has been dreaming, reading and writing romance ever since she read her first Mills & Boon as part of her English Literature degree at Lancaster University, so getting to write romantic fiction for a living really is a dream come true!

Born in Abu Dhabi, Sophie grew up in Wales and now lives in a little Hertfordshire market town with her scientist husband, her incredibly imaginative seven-year-old daughter, and her adventurous, adorable baby boy.

In Sophie’s world, happy is for ever after, everything stops for tea, and there’s always time for one more page…

Get all of Sophie’s latest news first at or follow her on Twitter @Sophie_Pembroke

Guest Post: by Sophie Pembroke
A Place Out Of Time

Rosewood, the setting for my latest novel, The Last Days of Summer, is, I’m afraid, a figment of my imagination. (My editor, Victoria, was particularly disappointed when I told her that.) But when I was writing the book, I knew exactly the sort of feel I wanted the house to have – the feel of a place out of time, existing beyond the modern day, where old fashioned traditions sat aside fantasy, cold hard reality, and a little bit of whimsy.

Part of that is caused by the idiosyncrasies of the characters. Nathaniel, particularly, likes to avoid technological progress (which is why there is no WiFi at Rosewood) and Isabelle wants to cling onto the niceties of a bygone age – like dressing for dinner and taking pre-dinner drinks on the terrace. Therese, with her vast collection of vintage clothes, plays into this by dressing Saskia up in outfits from different eras, so that any given evening could be a late colonial era affair or a 1920s jazz bar. Of course, Therese also insists on clinging to the tradition of afternoon tea, which I fully approve of!

The house itself is a golden bricked, Georgian mansion, with a history that stretches back far further than Nathaniel and Isabelle – as shown in the story Nathaniel tells at Saskia’s first dinner home. But even though I’ve never been so lucky as to stay in such a glorious house, its design was influenced by houses and people I’ve known.

In feel, Rosewood is very much HQ – my maternal grandparents’ house, where we would all gather every Sunday for dinner and drinks and conversation. Even the middle room, where Greg and Caro watch documentaries on the paranormal, is based on the middle room at HQ – a dark, hidden room between the dining room and the lounge, where us kids were banished to eat our dinner and play or watch telly on Sundays. Saskia’s bedroom – the Yellow Room – comes from a HQ tradition of referring to each of the bedrooms by the colour they were decorated. (Although HQ only had Green, Blue, Pink and Brown! Caro’s bedroom, incidentally, owes a lot to the Pink Room.)

The orangery, though, is based on my aunt and uncle’s conservatory, where we often eat Christmas dinner. The gardens are my parents’ garden, and my aunt and uncle’s and HQ’s all rolled into one with a little more added! They’ve all been the settings for fantastic garden parties, like my Grandparents’ Golden Wedding party, which inspired the party in the book. The Rose Garden comes from my Grandad’s love of growing yellow roses, too.

Therese’s afternoon tea habit comes from my paternal Grandmother, who we visited for afternoon tea every Saturday for years. She also inspired Isabelle’s stylish wardrobe!

So when I say Rosewood doesn’t exist in reality, maybe I mean it doesn’t exist in one place, but many – and is compiled more of precious memories and moments in time than of bricks and mortar.

Maybe that’s what makes it such a special place.

The Last Days of Summer is out now from Carina UK.

Keep up with all the latest from Rosewood at

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