Book Review: Amy Snow by Tracy Rees

Lonely eight year old Aurelia Vennaway finds an abandoned baby girl in the snow and takes her home to Hatville Court. She aptly names the baby Amy Snow and dissuades her parents from sending the baby to an orphanage.

Amy's life is not easy in the Vennaway household.  She is brought up by the servants, treated cruelly by Aurelia's mother and with indifference by Aurelia's father. Her only champion and protector is Aurelia, who contrary to her parents' wishes, nurtures Amy and later changes Amy's role in the household from servant to companion.

When Aurelia dies young, 17 year old Amy is no longer welcome at Hatville Court. The day after Aurelia's funeral, grieving and uncertain about her future, Amy departs the only home she has ever known, but she has not been totally abandoned for Aurelia has left Amy a series of letters. These letters contain instructions and puzzles to be solved, hinting at a discovery of a secret should Amy complete this unusual quest

The story, set in the middle of the 19th century, is told from Amy's perspective and weaves memories of her life with Aurelia with her present situation. Deciphering the clues in Aurelia's letters takes Amy on a journey around England where she experiences many aspects of life for the first time including what it would be like to be part of a warm and loving family.  At times self-doubt threatens to derail the quest, but such is Amy's trust in Aurelia that she carries on, gaining confidence, finding self-worth and eventually happiness.

Amy and Aurelia are two wonderful characters. I warmed to them both immediately. Aurelia, despite her cold and aristocratic parents, has a loving nature. This, combined with a strong will and the fact that she is independently wealthy, allows her to mentor Amy and provide the love and companionship that would otherwise be missing from her life. Amy in turn adores Aurelia and both are drawn closer by the secrets they share.

I loved this debut novel from Tracy Rees. I was hooked from the very first page. It is a treasure hunt with a difference and even though I guessed the outcome of Amy's quest, this did not diminish my enjoyment in any way. Amy Snow is 551 pages of absolute delight. A very quick read given its length and a story that will leave you uplifted and wanting more from this author. I am looking forward to Tracy Rees' next novel, Florence Grace, due out in June, 2016.


  1. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Glad to see you're of the same opinion!