Friday, January 15, 2016

Three Women's Lives Shaped by a Palatial Mansion

Three generations of women felt the mysterious pull of the Pratt mansion. In the late 1800s Olive's father designed and built the mansion for the Pratt family. When Pratt cheated him of his commission, he committed suicide, and Olive became a housemaid in the grand mansion that ruined her father.

In the 1920s Olive's daughter Lucy takes a room in the mansion that is now functioning as a boarding house for young ladies. She's determined to learn the secrets that tie her mother to the mansion. During WWII, Kate, Lucy's daughter, is a doctor working in the same mansion that is now functioning as a hospital to care for the wounded. She saves the life of a young captain, who is mysteriously tied to the mansion.

If you enjoy romantic family mysteries, this is a good one. Olive, Lucy and Kate are likable characters. Each brings her own personality to the story, although there is a strong family resemblance in the strength with which each woman faces her difficulties.

The mansion is a fascinating backdrop. The rooms are beautifully described, and all the clues to the family mystery are found in the mansion. In effect, the mansion becomes a character as much as a setting.

The story is told from three points of view. Lucy's and Olive's chapters are told in the third person. Kate's is told in the first person. The choice makes Kate's life seem more immediate and Lucy's and Olive's lives more like history.

I enjoyed the book. It's well written. Although the story moves slowly
in some places, it's worth pushing through to learn the family secrets.

I received this book for review from Net Galley.