Passion, redemption, and a battered old suitcase full of secrets: the New York Times best-selling author of A Hundred Summers returns with another engrossing tale of lost love and female ambition that crosses generations.
Manhattan, 1964. Vivian Schuyler, newly graduated from Bryn Mawr College, has recently defied the privilege of her storied old Fifth Avenue family to do the unthinkable for a budding Kennedy-era socialite: break into the Mad Men world of razor-stylish Metropolitan magazine. But when she receives a bulky overseas parcel in the mail, the unexpected contents draw her inexorably back into her family's past, and the hushed-over crime passionnel of an aunt she never knew, whose existence has been wiped from the record of history.
Berlin, 1914. Violet Schuyler Grant endures her marriage to the philandering and decades-older scientist Dr. Walter Grant for one reason: for all his faults, he provides the necessary support to her liminal position as a young American female physicist in prewar Germany. The arrival of Dr. Grant's magnetic former student at the beginning of Europe's fateful summer interrupts this delicate détente. Lionel Richardson, a captain in the British Army, challenges Violet to escape her husband's perverse hold, and as the world edges into war and Lionel's shocking true motives become evident, Violet is tempted to take the ultimate step to set herself free and seek a life of her own conviction with a man whose cause is as audacious as her own.
As the iridescent and fractured Vivian digs deeper into her aunt's past and the mystery of her ultimate fate, Violet's story of determination and desire unfolds, shedding light on the darkness of her years abroad - and teaching Vivian to reach forward with grace for the ambitious future - and the love - she wants most.
©2014 Beatriz Williams (P)2014 Penguin Audio
Yes. I loved the characters.
Vivian - very witty but also kind and sensitive
Delivery of wit as well emotion. Her delivery of Mr. Grant really painted his true character.
I LOVED the addition of Einstein and the history of pre-WWI developments. Also, I might need to re-listen because I missed what Violet spoke to Jane about. How did that play out? My stars are based on the fact that it completely captured me.
Hi all. I'm in my 50's (that's relevant, i think), and I favor fiction. I like the british sensibility, and was introduced to the Forsyte Saga through audible ... loved it! I happen to also like Chinese writers, but they are not well represented yet at audible. Looking to follow readers with similar tastes ...
This book was an interesting enough read, but it was lacking in depth or continuity. It has the feeling of a novel in installments. Okay to pass the time,
I enjoyed this book because it portrayed women who were educated and persuing goals that were out of the norm for the time. I love the twists this story makes through out. If you don't mind a few F words and sexual scenes I highly recommend this for a good beach read!
I was expecting literary historical fiction
Although billed as historical fiction it's chick lit. I'm not the right reader for this book and it was painful to read.
Her narration was like fingernails on a chalkboard - if possible she made Vivian even more annoying.
Vivian! She was supposed to be cute and charming but I found her to be vapid and silly.
Don't believe the publisher's description of a "substantive beach read steeped in history and familial intrigue". This is chick lit, pure and simple. Nothing against chick lit but this is chick lit of the eye-rolling variety with two of literature's most annoying protagonists ever and a plot that was silly and improbable. If it wasn't a book club book I wouldn't have read past the first chapter.
This book kept me interested from the first chapter to the last. It had wonderful contrasts and strong characters. The performance was very good and helped to guide you through the complexities of the story.
This is strictly for those who think a Harlequen romance is good reading. I couldn't get past the overly cocky, "I'm too cool-for-school" persona of Vivien. It was SO distasteful that the entire book was ruined for me.
I loved her previous book "A Hundred Summers", so this was a major dissappointment.
Re-write the character of Vivien !
I like historical, southern books - southern accents, antiques - The Ole' West, Ghost Towns, Victorian Era, Southern Humor!!
Loved it! I also enjoy listening to Kathleen McInerney!! Held my interest, totally. This was around 1914 and I love history. The story line kept me wanting for more! Violet's life was indeed secret until her niece............. : )
A must listen!
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.