Hello Gracious Readers!
Today I have a lovely book to share with you along with my review.
The London House: A Novel,
By the very talented Author Katherine Reay
The London House
• Title: The London House: A Novel
• Author: Katherine Reay
• Genre: Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction
• Publisher: Harper Muse (November 2, 2021)
• Length: (368) pages
• Format: Trade paperback, eBook, & audiobook
• Tour Dates: November 1-28, 2021
Uncovering a dark family secret sends one woman through the history of Britain’s World War II spy network and glamorous 1930s Paris to save her family’s reputation.
Caroline Payne thinks it’s just another day of work until she receives a call from Mat Hammond, an old college friend and historian. But pleasantries are cut short. Mat has uncovered a scandalous secret kept buried for decades: In World War II, Caroline’s British great-aunt betrayed family and country to marry her German lover.
Determined to find answers and save her family’s reputation, Caroline flies to her family’s ancestral home in London. She and Mat discover diaries and letters that reveal her grandmother and great-aunt were known as the “Waite sisters.” Popular and witty, they came of age during the interwar years, a time of peace and luxury filled with dances, jazz clubs, and romance. The buoyant tone of the correspondence soon yields to sadder revelations as the sisters grow apart, and one leaves home for the glittering fashion scene of Paris, despite rumblings of a coming world war.
Each letter brings more questions. Was Caroline’s great-aunt actually a traitor and Nazi collaborator, or is there a more complex truth buried in the past? Together, Caroline and Mat uncover stories of spies and secrets, love and heartbreak, and the events of one fateful evening in 1941 that changed everything.
In this rich historical novel from award-winning author Katherine Reay, a young woman is tasked with writing the next chapter of her family’s story. But Caroline must choose whether to embrace a love of her own and proceed with caution if her family’s decades-old wounds are to heal without tearing them even further apart.
“Carefully researched, emotionally hewn, and written with a sure hand, The London House is a tantalizing tale of deeply held secrets, heartbreak, redemption, and the enduring way that family can both hurt and heal us. I enjoyed it thoroughly.”— Kristin Harmel, New York Times bestselling author of The Forest of Vanishing Stars and The Book of Lost Names
“An expertly researched and marvelously paced treatise on the many variants of courage and loyalty . . . Arresting historical fiction destined to thrill fans of Erica Roebuck and Pam Jenoff.”— Rachel McMillan, author of The London Restorationand The Mozart Code
“Reay’s fast-paced foray into the past cleverly reveals a family’s secrets and how a pivotal moment shaped future generations. Readers who enjoy engrossing family mystery should take note.”— Publisher’s Weekly
This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.
This is a non spoiler review, because you as reader need to read this book. Also, I feel sometimes I have in the past gave away to much of the plot line. This has diminished the pleasure for would be readers.
From the desk of Gwendalyn Anderson
A captivating historical fiction that superbly interweaves fiction with historical elements and people. An intriguing story of family secrets that cast long shadows
Who was Caroline Waite?
Caroline Payne finds herself faced with the fact that her family hasn’t always been very truthful. Especially in regards to her namesake her aunt Caroline. Whom she told died of polio as a child. Recently contacted by historian Mat Hammond, who is an old college friend. Devastating allegations have come to light and Mat has unearthed information regarding her great aunt. Who was a twin sisterhood her grandmother, Margret Waite Payne.
A wonderful book full of heart wrenching family dynamics, curage and loss. Richly detailed historical fiction, that focuses on fractured relationships and age old family secrets.
A book that physically grabs the reader right from the start. The author swiftly moves the reader in a dual timeline narrative, through documents, pictures and letters. Expertly presented with quick pace you find yourself completely immersed within the pages. An outstanding WW2 fiction with an incredible storyline that flows with the authors seamless narration.
Reay gives the reader each piece of the puzzle, chapter by chapter, until you finally understand the big picture. The characters are well developed and completely three dimensional.
I have read and enjoyed all of Katherine Reay’s other books, but to me this is the best one yet!!
Katherine Reay is the national bestselling and award-winning author of Dear Mr. Knightley, Lizzy and Jane, The Brontë Plot, A Portrait of Emily Price, The Austen Escape, and The Printed Letter Bookshop. All Katherine’s novels are contemporary stories with a bit of classical flair. Katherine holds a BA and MS from Northwestern University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and is a wife, mother, former marketer, and avid chocolate consumer. After living all across the country and a few stops in Europe, Katherine now happily resides outside Chicago, IL.