Friday, February 15, 2013

The Ashford Affair by Lauren Willig

On the eve of the 21st century, Clementine Evans's life is falling apart.  Her engagement has just been broken off, her very proper and conventional mother is horrified, her step-cousin, the irksome Jon, is back in town, she's a slave to her law firm in a desperate race to make partner, and her beloved Granny Addie is seriously ill.  When Addie confusedly calls Clemmie by the name Bea, a whole closet full of skeletons and dark family secrets is cracked open.

In 1926 Africa, Addie is taking the train to see her once-favorite cousin Bea at her coffee farm in Kenya.  Engaged to be engaged, Addie isn't even sure why she has come all the way to the sun-soaked African savanna from the foggy streets of London to see Bea, who she hasn't seen or spoken to in years.  Cut off from the aristocratic family that took her in as an orphaned, poor cousin after the epic scandal of Bea's marriage to Frederick Desborough, Addie knows she must see the woman who was once her best friend before she marries the scholarly (and, quite frankly, boring) David.  And, even though she has quite firmly told herself otherwise, she knows she has really come to see Frederick again - Frederick, who once held all her hopes and her heart, and is now her cousin's husband.

From the author of the Pink Carnation spy novels comes this lavish period drama that fans of Downton Abbey will love to while away a weekend with!  Clemmie and Addie's stories are a tangled web of secrets, lies, and family drama that unfold in chapters alternating between 1999 New York and London and the champagne-soaked 1920s London and colonial Kenya.  With a dash of humor and quick wit, star-crossed romance that's absolutely worth the wait, and a generous dose of crazy family, anyone who loves a good generational saga will want to add The Ashford Affair to their spring reading list!

The Ashford Affair will be published on April 9, 2013.  The library received its advanced reader's copy from the publisher.  Watch CountyCat for this great read to be added so you can place a hold!