Following in the steps of Beatriz Williams and Amor Towles, this richly atmospheric, spellbinding novel transports readers to the dazzling, glamorous world of Newport during the Roaring Twenties and to a mansion filled with secrets as a debonair lawyer must separate truth from deception.
Spring 1921. The Great War is over, Prohibition is in full swing, the Depression still years away, and Newport, Rhode Island's glittering summer cottages are inhabited by the gloriously rich families who built them.
Attorney Adrian De la Noye is no stranger to Newport, having sheltered there during his misspent youth. Though he'd prefer to forget the place, he returns to revise the will of a well-heeled client. Bennett Chapman's offspring have the usual concerns about their father's much-younger fiance. But when they learn of the old widower's firm belief that his first late wife, who communicates via seance, has chosen the beautiful Catherine Walsh for him, they're shocked. And for Adrian, encountering Catherine in the last place he saw her decades ago proves to be a far greater surprise.
Still, De la Noye is here to handle a will, and he fully intends to do so - just as soon as he unearths every last secret, otherworldly or not, about the Chapmans, Catherine Walsh - and his own very fraught history.
A skillful alchemy of social satire, dark humor, and finely drawn characters, Newport vividly brings to life the glitzy era of the 1920s.
What made the experience of listening to Newport: A Novel the most enjoyable?
I did not expect a mystery and really enjoyed this book.
What did you like best about this story?
I really could picture the characters in my head
What does Johanna Parker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
The story could have had promise had it not been for the odd, ridiculous supernatural "appearances" of Mrs. Chapman. The actress/reader of the audio book was terrible, too, making her voice into a dramatic whisper throughout the whole story. Who talks like that?! Nobody. People don't fade off into a melodramatic whisper when they're talking, so why do it in an audiobook?! I honestly had to LIMP through this book. The characters were great and it would have been a great book had the author found a different, BETTER way to bring redemption to Adrian, Catherine, and even Amy.
Would you be willing to try another book from Jill Morrow? Why or why not?
No. There were so many other directions the author could have taken this book in a more believable, real way and insead chose a pathetic, supernatural apparition to bring "truth" to light. If this is her best, I'm not interested.
How could the performance have been better?
DON'T WHISPER! I get it, it's a performance and you're an actress, but this book could have done without the melodrama.
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