Ashton Hall: A Novel
Hannah Larson’s vacation to England with her son Nicky soon becomes an attempt to solve a centuries-old mystery. While exploring the historic Ashton Hall, Nicky comes across the body of a woman who died hundreds of years before. Nicky is fascinated, but Hannah is troubled and soon finds herself consumed by the need to know who the woman was and why she had been seemingly forgotten after her death.
I was intrigued by the book but had trouble fully settling into it. As a protagonist, Hannah feels nondescript and reactive, though I did appreciate her deep feelings and thoughts and could sympathize with her concern for her son. What bothered me more was the fact that so much of the book was given over to explanations. Her history with the friend who invited her to the hall was laid out in excruciating detail, as was the story of the tension between herself and her husband. Both were necessary to understanding how she came to be at Ashton Hall, but I felt they could have been woven into the narrative more naturally.
I did find the mystery fascinating, and those who enjoy stories about the trials of women far in the past may enjoy this book.
|Random House Publishing Group
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