The story goes back and forth between her, Vivian, and the past--pre WWI--to a scientist spurned by her own well-to-do American family. The 60' story mostly stays in NYC and revolves around a reporter, a romance with surprising twists and turns, a best friend, a rather snobby but utterly amusing family...and of course, the digging up of Violet Grant's tale.
Violet's tale takes us from English college in the early 1900s to Germany and parties with scientists and spies and tensions pre WWI in Europe. There's a lot of exciting things going on during her tale, though much of it is the background to her tumultuous relationship with her sexually perverted husband. I had a difficult time with this heroine. She's weak, blind, manipulated, doesn't see what's right in front of her. I wish her....dumbness in what is otherwise an extremely intelligent woman had been better explained. That has to be my only complaint about this novel. Though in her defense, she was a woman at a college, in a profession, in which women were not really accepted yet. At first, I can understand her being taken with the professor, who believes in her (so he says), and suffrage. But after being called child so many times...I was amazed she didn't see what I saw.
But moving on... Even Albert Einstein makes an appearance in this book!
Though a long novel, it's so well written and engaging, you won't even notice the length. I was just completely immerse and didn't want to put it down. You would expect, that due to the switching narratives, that it would be jarring, but it wasn't hard to realize instantly who was speaking and when. Extremely well done. And oooh, I love that it has an ending you don't see coming from page five. So rare nowadays. Totally shocked me! And delightfully so!
I'll be reading more of this author.
I received this via Edelweiss.