In Enchanted Isle by Melanie Dobson, it’s 1958 and Jenny Winter doesn’t know what to do with herself. She dropped out of college because she wasn’t doing well in any subject. Her grandfather has someone from his company lined up for her to marry, but Jenny’s not sure that’s what she wants.
Her mother encourages Jenny to go to the Lake District in England for a couple of months. Jenny’s mom, Liz, had visited the area some twenty years earlier and had a friend who would be willing to let Jenny stay with her.
So Jenny flew to Lakeland. Though she wasn’t academic, she saw life through pictures and had a vivid imagination, Her mom had purchased a camera for Jenny’s upcoming 21st birthday, and Jenny is eager to try it out on the beautiful lakes and fells.
One place Jenny especially wants to visit is a theme park called the Enchanted Isle. Liz thinks it’s probably closed now, but Jenny wants to try to get in, just to see it and take pictures.
She finds that the park was indeed closed down, but not due to its age. An unsolved murder occurred there twenty years earlier. And the nice young man she just met, Adrian, has had a shadow hanging over his family because of it. His father had built the park with his business partner. But the business partner disappeared, and everyone thinks Adrian’s father killed him.
Jenny’s mother’s friend warns Jenny to stay away from Adrian, not only for his family’s history but for his own mistakes. But as Jenny gets to know him, she thinks he has been misjudged.
As Jenny uncovers the theme park’s history, she and Adrian discover that not everyone wants the park’s secrets revealed. And Jenny finds that even her mother didn’t tell her everything about her visit to Lakeland.
Another book I read recently mention the Lake District, so it was fun to find out more about the area.
The faith element of the story was natural and not preachy.
This was a sweet story, despite the murder mystery part of it. That part was handled well and with suspense. But I liked even better the themes of finding your own place in the world despite others’ expectations and not judging others, but getting to know their story.