Title: Take Me Home
Author: Karly Lane
Published: May 4th 2021
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Genres: Fiction, Contemporary
Rating: 4 stars
When Elle Kinnaird takes the plunge and travels from her rural small-town life to the misty legends of her ancestors in the Scottish highlands, she finds that it’s a big world after all. A heartwarming novel about new beginnings, from the bestselling author of Fool Me Once.‘I loved this read! The main characters were so engaging, their back stories poignant and heartbreaking…their everyday lives relatable with an appeal that connects to the reader…’ Reading Writing and Riesling on Something Like This
It was a straightforward request. Take her gran home to her beloved Scotland.
In the space of a few days, Elle loses her job and her home and faces moving back in with her parents-where she knows she’ll hear a lot about how she is wasting her life, unlike her three siblings . . .
Then Gran’s will is read and everything changes.
It seems simple: a road trip across Scotland, a country Gran loved, to locate the family castle; meet some long lost cousins; oh, and work out what she wants to do with the rest of her life before returning home. Not a problem.
That is unless the family castle is a ruin that has pretty much been lost in time; the family Elle has never met seem to be hiding a mysterious secret; her over-achieving parents are breathing down her neck, and she’s running out of time to make a decision about her future.
Take Me Home is a glorious lesson in life, love and finding your true destiny.
‘Oh sweetheart, none of that now. That time’s past. I don’t want you sitting about feeling sorry for yourself anymore. I had the best life anyone could possibly ask for. It’s time to move on, she said gently but with a briskness that was oh so familiar. And you can start by booking that trip to Scotland.’
A splendid tale of family, connections, identity, faith and personal choice, Take Me Home is the latest title from Australian rural romance queen, Karly Lane. Take Me Home heralds Karly Lane’s first dalliance in the general contemporary fiction scene. A thoroughly enjoyable and life affirming tale, I recommend Take Me Home to all readers.
Following her late grandmother’s request to take her ashes back home to Scotland, Elle knows she must fulfil her grandmother’s last wishes. Elle’s life is on a downward spiral, she is unemployed and will soon be without a home. Elle is also the black sheep in her family as her siblings have all managed to achieve success. A life changing revelation is made once Elle’s grandmother passes away and this kick starts Elle’s journey to Scotland. In Scotland, Elle connects with her family’s heritage, her grandmother’s favourite haunts and she is acquainted with some extended family. Scotland also gives Elle the chance to reflect on her life as it stands, can she find the courage to do what she really wants? But a ruined castle, a family secret, parental pressures and time all stands in the way as Elle wades her way through an uncertain future.
It is hard to believe that Take Me Home marks the seventeenth release from one of our country’s most loved and respected rural romance writers, Karly Lane. With the success of so many novels behind her, it is good to see Lane take on a brand-new genre in a very different location to her usual Aussie bush-based tales. Lane still incorporates some rural elements in her newest tale, but this time there is a rich Scottish flavour. I really appreciated the chance to learn more about rural life and the sheep farming trade in Scotland. This was a highlight of the book.
Family and relationships play a big part in Take Me Home. The lead of this new Karly Lane tale is quite the outcast. We learn that Elle is less successful than her siblings and has clearly made some ill-fated choices in her life. I sat on tenterhooks as I hoped that Elle would be able to follow her dreams and achieve her own success away from the shadow of her siblings. I valued being a part of this eventful character soul searching journey. It is hard to tear yourself away from Elle’s adventures. Along the way we are acquainted with a number of memorable characters who help to shine a guiding light on this new Karly Lane tale. I think Take Me Home is true crowd pleaser, as it encompasses many relatable themes in relation to life, love, family and personal choice.
The Scottish backdrop is very carefully rendered by Karly Lane and you can really feel Lane’s love for this corner of the world through her passionate writing. I was able to place myself very easily in the setting base, thanks to Lane’s expressive prose. The attention to detail in regards to the language, culture, local cuisines and various places that the lead encounters made Take Me Home a captivating read.
I was touched by the slight paranormal slant this book takes in relation to Elle and her dearly departed grandmother. It was an interesting story angle that worked to support the strong link Elle shares with her grandmother. In general, I felt my excitement build as Elle tried to solve an intriguing mystery which in turn helps Elle lay her grandmother to rest peacefully. Readers will also find the love story that gently shadows this novel a joy to read. I really connected to this lower-level romance story between Elle and a local farmer.
Like the author, I have Scottish roots, so the opportunity to partake in a travel experience to a place I do hope to visit one day in the future thanks to Take Me Home was superb. Down to earth, heartwarming and wholesome, Take Me Home signals a lovely new direction for Karly Lane.
Take Me Home by Karly Lane was published on 4th May 2021 by Allen & Unwin. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.
To learn more about the author of Take Me Home, Karly Lane, visit here.
*Thanks extended to Allen & Unwin for providing a free copy of this book for review purposes.
Take Me Home is book #54 of the 2021 Australian Women Writers Challenge