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The Girl on the Cliff: A Novel Paperback – October 30, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Troubled by a recent miscarriage, Grania Ryan leaves her loving boyfriend in New York and seeks solace at her family’s home in Ireland. Despite the soothing effects of her mother’s cooking, countless cups of tea, and long, contemplative walks along the coast, Grania still can’t imagine returning to her old life in America. When Grania meets a tiny, redheaded girl wandering the same stretch of rocky coastline, the two strike up an unusual friendship. The young girl turns out to be Aurora Lisle, an inhabitant of the mysterious Dunworley House and the youngest member of the oft-discussed Lisle family. As Grania’s relationship with the Lisle family grows stronger, she’s forced to make choices that will not only affect her time spent in Ireland but potentially the rest of her life. Riley, author of the best-selling The Orchid House (2012), has crafted a spellbinding family drama full of long-buried secrets and set against the wind-swept Irish coast. Riley’s authorial voice is lyrical yet driven, familiar to fans of Carol Cassella and Jodi Picoult. Tautly paced yet picturesque, The Girl on the Cliff is a compelling and romantic novel of recovery, redemption, new opportunities, and lost love. --Stephanie Turza

Review

"Tautly paced yet picturesque, The Girl on the Cliff is a compelling and romantic novel of recovery, redemption, new opportunities, and lost love." (Booklist (Starred Review))

"The Girl on the Cliff firmly establishes Lucinda Riley as one of the most compelling and gifted storytellers working today." (The Paramus Post)

“Colorful writing…Keeps the pages turning.” (Kirkus Reviews)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; Reprint edition (October 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451655827
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451655827
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (340 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,751 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Leah Graham on October 30, 2011
Format: Paperback
The Girl on the Cliff is a novel with many strands. There's the present day story of how Grania Ryan meets Aurora Devonshire on the edge of a cliff, how the relationship between the two of them changes their lives, how it brings up a lot of resentment for Grania's mother who has long been privy to the feud between the Ryan family and the Lisle family. The novel starts in present day, but eventually, we head back in time, to how the Lisles and the Ryans came to feud. How moments in time made it so that the Ryans and the Lisles saw each other as enemies and the Ryans worried that the Lisles would forever make them miserable, would forever ruin their lives... I mean, there's so much going on in the novel that I couldn't possibly describe it all, but it all culminates in the present day relationship between Grania and Aurora and how, despite having a decades-long feud, one little girl can be an instigator for change.

The novel may include many characters, but the character who makes a lasting impression is Aurora. She may only be a child, but she's one of the most wise and grown-up children characters you'll ever meet. It's like she has a sixth sense most of the time and I fell totally in love with her. She's so captivating and I so admired her spirit. For a girl who has lost so much, for a girl without her mother, her exuberance and joie de vivre and lust for life is just awesome. She acts so much older than her age - 8, 9 - and I can see exactly why Grania completely fell in love with her.

The many different stories and layers that make up the novel are also exquisite. Mary's war-time story was massively captivating - what she did, what she sacrificed, how it mirrored what Aurora was doing, was so lovely to read.
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Dolce Bellezza on November 26, 2011
Format: Paperback
I just finished this saga last night, a wonderful, involved novel of two families and the effect that they had on one another through the generations. I was completely caught up in Grania's story, set mostly in Ireland, through whose point of view most of the novel is told. She has left her fiance, Matt, behind in England to return to her home in Ireland. During her stay with her Mam (love that word!) she encounters a girl on the cliff, Aurora, who completely captivates her heart much to Grania's mother's dismay.

So Grania is given, through letters and flashbacks, the history of Aurora's family. How her grandparents interacted with Grania's and the devastations that occurred due to war. Selfishness, fear and love.

In the end, Grania must decide if she will stay with Matt. She must balance her pride and her love to make their relationship succeed.

The Girl On The Cliff is a perfect blend of romance and intrigue, with characters crafted carefully enough that they seem to jump from the page into real life. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
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34 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Brett H TOP 500 REVIEWER on February 10, 2012
Format: Paperback
The Girl on the Cliff is the saga of two families in Southern Ireland, whose connections go back a hundred years. There are hints quite early on that there are dark and terrible secrets hidden away, but frankly a fair way in I was enjoying the book but thinking that the secrets did not seem to be particularly dark or terrible. However, it later emerges that there are some quite nasty skeletons rattling around in the cupboard.

The story involves Grania, who has been living in New York and has just suffered a miscarriage. She comes back to her childhood home away from her long term partner Matt. She soon meets a young girl, Aurora, out on the cliffs who is from the Lisle family, Grania herself being a Ryan. Grania is soon closely involved with Aurora and her father and the family histories are gradually revealed as the book switches between the relevant time periods.

I thought the character development was very good. The author clearly has the ability to let her readers get under the skin of her main characters. This particularly applied to the main modern day players, Grania, Matt and Aurora and it was very easy to appreciate their hopes and fears. Some of the historical figures were also very interesting.

This is not my normal sort of reading material, so it speaks volumes that I thoroughly enjoyed it and read through it very quickly. At times it was a little predictable and I found myself jumping ahead of the story as key developments were flagged up in advance, though I did not feel this reduced my enjoyment of the book. However, the story retained the ability to surprise and there is certainly a big one waiting at the end.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By G. Witenske on April 10, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed this book - the story telling goes over several generations, weaving in and out, back and forth between generations. Plus the love stories and subtle twists. Excellent, fun read.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jaykay on February 28, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was a bit disappointed with this book as quite a few reviewers gave it 5 stars. I thought the story was contrived and overly sentimental. I didn't particularly like the character of Grania, I thought her partner Matt was better off without her to be honest.And what's with Aurora. She is supposed to be 8 years old. Even allowing for a sense of maturity she was 8 going on 55. It was a bit like a soap opera. Okay but nothing special.
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