Wicklow, Ireland – The Heart of Winter – Emma Hannigan

ireland 2

Why a booktrail?

2000s – Back to Wicklow, Ireland and the busy home of the Craig family and the Huntersbrook estate.


Huntersbrook is the estate of the Craig family which has been in the family for years. It might not be the full estate it once was but it is still the house of memories and nostalgia for the siblings who have grown up there. There are plans to relaunch it however and the Christmas wedding of a popular actress should help get the place back  on its feet.

But plans have a way of being scuppered. The siblings should see to that. What with Pippa’s  raucous and reckless life spiralling out of control,  brother Joey’s personal struggles with his partner and business and then Lainey, poor Lainey who is dealt the most cruel blow of all. Does any of them have the chance to save their home as well as themselves?

Place and setting

Wicklow Wicklow Mountains Huntersbrook House is fictional but Russborough House near the Blessington Lakes is a close second we think! http://russboroughhouse.ie/index.php
Wicklow Mountains
Huntersbrook House is fictional but Russborough House near the Blessington Lakes is a close second we think!

Huntersbrook house in Wicklow Ireland, is the the country estate you will want to visit. The cover shows it in its charming winter setting and as you open the cover and walk inside, the buzz of the places comes to life in exquisite detail.

It has a gate lodge, the two bed bungalow to the right of the entrance which reminds Pippa of the cottage from the novel Hansel and Gretel. Drive up the gravel path to the house itself however and the stunning Georgian facade, the Craig family jewel shimmers in the cool, crisp, Irish air.

Once inside the story of the siblings and the house itself warms your heart, and life seems to be centered in the busy bustling kitchen when the family comes back in order to save their history. Lainey lives in a house next door and she has always felt as if she ‘s never left home.

Told in alternate chapters through the eyes of Lainey, Pippa and Joey, their lives away from Huntersbrook will show the house and their view of it in a new light. How one house can unite a family, break it apart and fix it again. Home is where the heart is after all.


The Craig family are back after we first met them in Driving Home for Christmas and this is the latest installment in their story. Now all adults, the siblings have led very different lives and have a very unique view and experience of their childhood home. How differently three people can turn out despite having had the very same start in life!

I hadn’t read Driving Home for Christmas before reading this installment in the Craig family story but I wished I had as although this did read as  a standalone I wanted to know these people more  and felt I had come to the party a little late.

I enjoy novels like this where the home, and the family home is at the centre and seems a really apt setting and story for Irish set fiction. I know Huntersbrook now and I would love to go back there and be a part of the family unit. The Christmas scenes in particular were heartwarming and I can honestly say that the word saga was written for this family as there’s plenty of it!

And I can’t finish without mentioning the gloriously sparkly cover! Aaah.

Susan (now living at Huntersbrook please Miss Hannigan!)

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