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The House by the Lake by Ella Carey
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The House by the Lake

by Ella Carey

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I enjoyed this book more than any I've read this year! If you are a history buff, as I am, and love reading about World War II, Paris and Germany, you will love this one!
Also, I didn't realize, until I'd finished the book and read the author's notes, that a few of the characters and the Paris apartment that was discovered locked and untouched for 70 years were all real! I can't wait to dig into more reading about the apartment and the women who lived there in the late 1800's until 1940.

I loved that this story went from the past to the present with each chapter, building the tales of all characters until you couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen, or had happened in the past.
I look forward to reading this author's other titles and doing more research on the life of Marthe de Florian and her amazing Paris apartment! ( )
  hey-mom | May 12, 2017 |
This was a pleasant surprise, 3.5 stars rounded up. Any novel that combines finding hidden things beneath floorboards in boarded up houses, the discovery of a sealed apartment, finding lost family connections, I'm in! At times the story was intriguing, fast moving, and I couldn't wait to see what happened next. Sadly there were times when the story did drag and I lost some interest. I did come away interested in reading more from Ella Carey, thus the rounding up. ( )
  CMDH5 | May 6, 2017 |
Historical fiction, which the author explains at the end of the book, adding to my interest. Alternating chapters of WWII era and 2010 merging the past with the present as a loving granddaughter strives to fulfill her grandfather's last wish. By doing so, she found her true self. ( )
  bogopea | Apr 30, 2017 |
‘The House By the Lake’ by Ella Carey is about a fastidious woman named Anna who lives a very orderly life in San Francisco as owner of an eclectic coffee shop. Her elderly grandfather, Max, one day asks her to go to Germany to retrieve an article which he left behind years ago in their abandoned family estate when the Nazis took over more than seventy years ago. While Anna explores the abandoned estate and tries to piece together the mystery of her grandfather’s past, she meets a kind and handsome attorney, Wil Jager, who helps her to uncover the mystery behind her grandfather’s romance with Isabelle de Florian, daughter of the famous courtesan Mathe de Florian. Although the plot seems to have the potential to become a riveting story, the characters seem to be underdeveloped, and the author devotes considerable prose into describing the estate, as well as the apartment in Paris where de Florian resided. Having said that, I did think that the writing is very descriptive and rather engaging, and will make for an entertaining read, although not a compelling one. I am most interested in how affluent German families endured the forced conscription into the Nazi military, as well as the altercation to their lives caused by the Hitler regime. The story touches upon the hardships and difficult choices of war-torn Europe, but the author might further develop the tragedy suffered by Max, and how that unhinged his life thereafter. In addition, the character of Anna is developed in a limited way. Although the novel suggests that she was previously hurt by another relationship, it is unclear as to why she is now reticent to start a new relationship with Wil, when he seems to offer himself like a knight in shining armor. ( )
  haymaai | Apr 14, 2017 |
This historical fiction book was beautifully written. I loved the way Ms. Carey meshed the past with the present. I was so involved with the story, when it ended I had to get on the internet to research the actual apartment found in France and the true to life Paris Courtesan the story was created after. This is not my normal read, but I am so glad I ventured out. This book is a must read. ( )
  Sandralb | Feb 1, 2017 |
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Anna is content with her well-order life in San Francisco. However, when her beloved grandfather, Max, reveals that they are part of an aristocratic family who during World War II were forced to leave their estate in Prussia. Max's ardent wish is for Anna to retrieve a precious item left in that estate over seventy years ago.… (more)

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