Savannah Palmerton returns to her Georgian alma mater to take an art class. An affair quickly brews between Savannah and her instructor. But before it gets hot and heavy, Savannah brings the relationship to a halt. Savannah is a troubled woman, especially since her marriage is on the rocks. An unusual string of events unfolds between Savannah and her husband, Price, including a heated argument. The next thing Savannah knows, Price has been murdered and she is earmarked as his alleged killer. Tension rises when Phil Hannigan, an attorney, is willing to take on Savannah’s case but demands transparency from her, which means that she will have to expose her family’s well-kept secrets. Amid trying moments and other tragedies, Savannah is pleasantly surprised when a new opportunity for romance awaits her.
Lee’s latest is an unexpected romance amid a murder mystery. Set during the early 1960s, Lee’s attention-grabbing narrative offers a glimpse into a disturbing time in U.S. history and its stifling societal mores. Aside from the oppressive stigma placed upon females in a male-dominated society, Lee sheds light on the Civil Rights movement (i.e., segregation, protesting) and President John F. Kennedy’s assassination. While balancing her plot with history and weaving in the stark contrasts between white female and male roles among the wealthy, Lee also gives an idea of life for black woman. In the case of Neenie, Savannah’s long-time nanny, blending in with society is more complicated because of her mixed (white/black) background. Lee mixes her above-mentioned concepts with other various literary tools, which keeps her narrative fresh and constantly flowing. Such elements include engaging dialogue lightly sprinkled with tongue-in-cheek and sarcastic comments, elusive character traits, and red herrings, to name a few. High on the element list is her incorporation of romance by building sexual tension between her characters. Paper Castles is nothing less than a gripping read that carries wide reader appeal.
Capricorn Publishing House