Mistress of Mellyn Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Mistress of Mellyn

Martha Leigh and her sister has a happy childhood, but after their parent's death they go to live with an aunt. They have a "season" and Martha's sister manages to find a good husband.
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But Martha doesn't, and is forced to take up the job of a governess in a castle in Cornwall. The master of the house is Connan Tremellyn who is a widower whose wife has died under mysterious circumstances.

Connan has a difficult daughter called Alvean. She had three governesses in one year. Alvean could get along with the last governess. But she was accused of theft by Connan's mistress (a lovely young lady married to an old squire for his money) and forced to resign.

Gradually as Martha gets more involved with the Tremellyn family, she falls in love with Connan in spite of herself. Then she gradually realises that Connan's previous wife Alice could not have run away with the dashing neighbour Geoffry Nanselock. In the meantime she also discovers that Alvean is Geoffrey's daughter.

However she convinces Connan that Alvean still needs a lot of love and caring.

She also befriends a mentally retarded and neglected child called Gillyflower who is also Geoffrey's daughter. Gilly used to love Alice very much and gradually transfers her love to Martha.

Connan falls in love with Martha and they get engaged.
Then Martha goes through a period of self doubt regarding whether Connan really loves her or not. She also realises that somebody is trying to kill her and she feels that Connan himself might be involved in the plot.

The climax of the story is the unusual ending where Martha is buried up in a long forgotten hole, where she also finds Alice's dead skeleton. Luckily for her Gilly sees where she is buried and helps Connan rescue Martha. They finally get married and live happily ever after.

The review of this Book prepared by sharmishtha shenoy

A young Victorian woman in England finds a job as a governess for a young girl in Cornwall, England. She enters service in a castle near the sea and within those walls, she finds mysteries she ends up solving and finds love at the end, too!
The review of this Book prepared by Debbie

Martha Leigh falls on hard times and is forced to get a job. She gets a position as a governess for the spoiled daughter of Connan TreMellyn. She hears all sorts of gossip about the family and determines to discover whether or not it's true. A very intriguing story.
The review of this Book prepared by Laura J. Miller

Chapter Analysis of Mistress of Mellyn

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Plot & Themes

Time/era of story    -   1600 to 1899 Hidden Identity/Secret Motive    -   Yes Is really...    -   a criminal (possibly) In love with caretaker or teacher    -   Yes Falling in love with    -   Nanny Children/Pregnancy    -   Yes Children/Pregnancy:    -   kid(s) make adults sensitive

Main Male Character

Profession/status:    -   wealthy Age/status:    -   20's-30's

Main Female Character

   -   20's-30's Profession/status:    -   teacher Unusual characteristics:    -   Very shy


Europe    -   Yes Mountains/Cliffs    -   Yes Misc setting    -   Fancy Mansion

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Focus of story    -   Her How much dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Mistress of Mellyn

Victoria Holt Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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