The Winter Cottage by Rachael Lucas



When Rilla Clark’s long lost father dies, she leaves New England and heads to his cottage in the Scottish Highlands to sort out his affairs. Rilla’s determined that her visit will be a fleeting one. The little village of Applemore holds a lot of memories for her, but looking back might just open up her heart, which she’s kept well-guarded until now.

Lachlan Fraser is less than delighted with his inheritance. He left the grand, crumbling Applemore House as soon as he could, and he can’t see why his three sisters love it so much. Gathered together at their family estate, the battle of wills over what to do with the house is just beginning when into their life walks Rilla, who they haven’t seen for over fifteen years…

Old friendships and long-hidden emotions are rekindled as the romance of a Highland winter works its magic – will Rilla and Lachlan discover that home isn’t a place, but a feeling?

Full of warmth and romance, this is the perfect cosy escape to curl up with,


My review

I adore Rachael Lucas’s books and so I was delighted to join the blog tour for her latest one, Winter Cottage. This is a very enjoyable festive romcom, although the comedy element is beautifully subtle and with tiny hints of darkness as it’s deaths that bring our main characters together.

The setting is the Scottish Highlands and Ms Lucas transports us there instantly with all the sharply observed detail her readers are used to. We can practically feel Applemore House crumbling around us and can clearly see it in all its faded grandeur in our imaginations.

The cast of characters we encounter are fascinating. Each is uniquely different, and no one can be mistaken for anyone else. They complement and bounce off each other, providing us with lots of entertainment on the way.

The ‘foreigner abroad slash wanderer returns’ trope is a common one but it offers so much scope for fun and frustration that it never gets tired. Certainly here in Ms Lucas’s hands, where our wanderer is Rilla, it’s fabulous, with misunderstandings, misconceptions and a lot to catch up on.

In summary, this is a book you will lose yourself in for a few hours to resurface from feeling positive and festive, and looking forward to the next book by this lovely author.


About the author

Rachael Lucas has written ten novels for adults and teenagers, including the Carnegie nominated THE STATE OF GRACE, the top ten bestseller SEALED WITH A KISS and her most recent British bestseller THE TELEPHONE BOX LIBRARY. She is also the author (as Rosie Curtis) of sweet holiday romance We Met in December, an Amazon Editors’ Pick. Her novels have been translated into many languages, including Italian, Turkish, French, German, Latvian, Estonian, Danish, Norwegian, and more.

Sign up for Rachael’s newsletter at, follow Rachael on twitter at, find her on Facebook at and keep up with her day to day stories on Instagram – just search Rachael Lucas to find her!

Rachael lives by the seaside in the north west of England with her family and two very enthusiastic spaniels. When she’s not writing at the kitchen table with a coffee by her side, she’s out walking the dogs on the beach or the nearby pinewoods. She’s a huge Kindle fan – her ten year old self would have been over the moon to be able to carry a whole library around in her pocket – and a lover of sweet, romantic, small town stories, which is exactly what she likes to write. She’s a big Hallmark movie fan, wanted to be Anne of Green Gables when she was growing up, and Jo March was her literary heroine. (She still is.)

Rachael’s books are full of warmth and gentle humour, as well as beautiful small town settings which give her readers an escape from everyday. Rachael has been described as having “a gift for capturing complex emotion and both romantic and platonic intimacy” and writing which “exudes positivity and warmth” (Publisher’s Weekly). The Guardian called her “honest, romantic and hilarious”. Her teenage boys think she’s a bit disorganised, and that she forgets to cook dinner when she’s writing. (Luckily they don’t get to leave a review.)