Reader Reviewed The Secret Countess by Eva Ibbotson
  

The Secret Countess

Written by Eva Ibbotson

YA readers   
Download an extract Add to wishlist Share this book

The Lovereading4Kids comment

This is a beguiling story of a young Russian countess who loses everything in her homeland but finds sanctuary in England as a house maid in an aristocratic household. The trappings of her childhood of privilege are a distant memory but then she falls in love (forbidden of course for she is a servant girl) with the young Earl of the family who is already spoken for, Anna must decide whether to risk losing everything or reveal her true identity in the hope of ensnaring the love of her life. As with all Eva's novels, the writing and characterisation is sublime.

Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Charnell Vevers - 'This is yet another Eva Ibbotson novel that showcases how effortlessly she writes historical romance.'
  • Edel Waugh - 'When I first saw the new edition of this book I fell in love with the pretty cover instantly and as I began reading it, it just got better!'
  • Catherine Bryce - 'A truly well written romantic love story with a surprising twist.'
  • Hannah Ward - 'This story is set in 1919, and concentrates on Anna's story who I absolutely loved, she is a real gem and such a lovely human being...A truly magical tale.'
  • Kush Melwani - 'An enchanting tale perfect for fans of Downton Abbey and Cinderella!...I found myself reading it out loud just to further appreciate the words.'

Synopsis

The Secret Countess by Eva Ibbotson

Anna, a young countess, has lived in the glittering city of St Petersburg all her life in an ice-blue palace overlooking the River Neva. But when revolution tears Russia apart, her now-penniless family is forced to flee to England. Armed with an out-of-date book on housekeeping, Anna determines to become a housemaid and she finds work at the Earl of Westerholme's crumbling but magnificent mansion. The staff and the family are sure there is something not quite right about their new maid - but she soon wins them over with her warmth and dedication. Then the young Earl returns home from the war - and Anna falls hopelessly in love. But they can never be together: Rupert is engaged to the snobbish and awful Muriel - and anyway, Anna is only a servant. Or so everybody thinks ...

About the Author

Eva Ibbotson

Born in Vienna, Eva Ibbotson came to England as a small girl. She spent much of her adult life in Newcastle upon Tyne. When her husband was alive he bred snails in the garage; they also kept fish and had a small and very hairy dog. Eva had four grown-up children and seven grandchildren. She wrote for both adults and children. Which Witch was runner-up for the Carnegie Medal and The Secret of Platform 13 was shortlisted for the Smarties Prize. Journey to the River Sea won the Smarties Book Prize Gold Award, was runner-up for the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year and the Guardian Fiction Award, and was also shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.

Eva's books for older readers (12+) include: The Morning Gift, A Song for Summer, The Secret Countess, A Company of Swans and Magic Flutes. Her books for younger readers (9+) include: The Dragonfly Pool, Journey to the River Sea and The Star of Kazan.

And for even younger readers (7+): Which Witch, Dial a Ghost, Not just a Witch, Monster Mission, The Beasts of Clawstone Castle, The secret of Platform 13, The Great Ghost rescue and The Haunting of Hiram.

Eva's final novel that she completed prior to her death at the age of 85 in 2010 is called One Dog and his Boy.

Eva Ibbotson on writing:
"I started to scribble stories when I was about seven years old and I just carried on so I became a writer gradually. I didn't try to get anything published until I was quite grown-up. I write at my mother's old desk, looking out on to a leafy street, and I rewrite what I have written again and again until I get the words the way I want them (most of my pages have been through eight drafts or so). It's my belief that one should be in the same place each day, so that if an idea is hovering it knows where to find you. Ideas can come from places one has seen or conversations one has overheard - or just from nowhere! Being an author can be lonely, difficult and frustrating, but there is nothing else I'd rather be."

More books by this author

Loading similar books...

Other Formats

Book Info

Format

Paperback
352 pages
Interest Age: From 12

Author

Eva Ibbotson
More books by Eva Ibbotson

Publisher

Macmillan Children's Books an imprint of Pan Macmillan

Publication date

26th March 2015

ISBN

9781447280101

Categories


It is fantastic, you get to read lots of books and you always find something new and amazing in them.

Erica Motoc, age 7

You give me age appropriate ideas of books I can read and buy for the children and find out what other children their age think of them too.

Katie Lonsdale

Lovereading4kids is great, we get books really early never late. We love to read and review, and think you would like it too. The excitement

Jasmine Harris-Hart, age 12

It gives me a chance to read types of books that I would not normally try, and it motivates me to read every night to finish it!

Alice Horncastle, age 14

We love Lovereading4kids because they put books in front of us we wouldn’t otherwise have read. They make us more adventurous readers!

Emily Jacques

I love Lovereading because I often never know what to read and this helps you find a good book. I have recommended this to many people.

Shannon-Louise Masters – age 15

I love Lovereading4kids because I get an opportunity to put my opinion forward and to try new books

Elosie Clarkson – age 11

It’s really exciting to read and review new books, thrilling to see my reviews online and I love finding the final published copies on sale.

Sam Harper – age 10
Lovereading

Lovereading 4 schools