House of Shadows: A Novel

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The House of Shadows is a tale that spans three different eras. The story centers around the Sistrin Pearl and a crystal mirror, both said to hold magical powers. Elizabeth Stuart, the Winter Queen, and her rumored lover/husband, William Craven, are the first to encounter the objects in the 1600s. Next is Lavinia Flyte, a courtesan in 1800 living in Ashdown house, which William built for Elizabeth. She is living with a descendant of William’s who is desperate to find the pearl and the mirror in order to gain money. Robert Verity comes to survey the property to help find it, and he and Lavinia fall in love. Lastly, Holly Ansell in present day has come back to Ashdown in search of her missing brother, who was researching family history and looking for the same ill-fated objects. Each of these people will discover that these two seemingly harmless things bring only death and destruction.

I enjoyed this book. I will say that at times I found the three storylines to be confusing. The story weaved back and forth between the three, and I found it hard to remember something mentioned in the chapter I was reading when it took place three chapters ago in a different timeline. I would say that this book is mostly a romance, although it is very historical. It mainly focuses on love lost and being found again, in different people. Destiny is definitely something this story focuses on. It’s great read, nonetheless, and if you love all things British, especially their history, as well as ill-fated romances, you will enjoy this book. It’s not a quick read, and you might want to make sure you really focus to catch all the details, but it’s still worth it.

Chris Hayden been working at City Book Review since 2012, so that makes him the keeper of knowledge. He manages the office and book reviewers (all 200 of them!), which is no small feat. If you’re looking at the book reviews here, you’re seeing them because he sent the books out for review. Without him, this place would fall apart, because no one else in the office knows how to use the postage machine. Two words: job security.

Reviewed By:

Author Nicola Cornick
Star Count 4/5
Format Trade
Page Count 432 pages
Publisher Graydon House
Publish Date 2017-Oct-17
ISBN 9781525811388
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue November 2017
Category Historical Fiction


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