This book has been sitting on my shelf for so long. At least since it was first released in 2016. All three of these authors are some of my favorites, but this book was their first collaboration and I was hesitant to read it.
Sometimes reading a book by three people is awkward and weird—even if they are three extremely successful authors.
So on my shelf it sat. And sat. and sat. Until their second collaboration was released, The Glass Ocean. I downloaded The Glass Ocean on Audible on a whim and randomly listened to it in my car running errands and fell in love with their three different timelines approach to their novel.
I planned to read this one immediately following, but then life got busy and I forgot it, until I had an extra Audible credit and decided to give this one a shot on Audible instead.
1945: When the critically wounded Captain Cooper Ravenal is brought to a private hospital on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, young Dr. Kate Schuyler is drawn into a complex mystery that connects three generations of women in her family to a single extraordinary room in a Gilded Age mansion.
Who is the woman in Captain Ravenel’s portrait miniature who looks so much like Kate? And why is she wearing the ruby pendant handed down to Kate by her mother? In their pursuit of answers, they find themselves drawn into the turbulent stories of Gilded Age Olive Van Alen, driven from riches to rags, who hired out as a servant in the very house her father designed, and Jazz Age Lucy Young, who came from Brooklyn to Manhattan in pursuit of the father she had never known. But are Kate and Cooper ready for the secrets that will be revealed in the Forgotten Room? (summary from Goodreads)
Personally, I liked this one much better than The Glass Ocean. I am not really sure why, but I just did. I felt more dramatic and epic than The Glass Ocean for some reason but both books are really good for different reasons.
This book is about missed opportunities and long lost love, and forbidden love. It felt epic and sweeping on so many levels and I had an incredibly hard time putting it down. I found myself driving randomly so I could listen to it!
I personally loved Kate’s story best. I thought her romance with the Captain touching and tender. I loved how Lucy’s story ended up. While I might have made a different choice, I could appreciate why she went with the person she did.
Poor Olive. I found her so naive and young but the romance was so sweet and though it seemed unlikely to work out in the long run, I was still in love with the idea of Harry and Olive together in an Italian Villa painting and making love all day.
There was so much to love in this book. Romance, history, and a little bit of a mystery. The only thing I thought that could have been done away with was the Gus storyline. As a character he seemed like a waste of space. His time in the book was so limited and did nothing to further the story in my opinion—I would have just cut his part out all together.
While this book had a couple of little flaws, it was incredibly well done and I enjoyed every single chapter. If you love historical fiction with some romance, this book is one you don’t want to miss. I loved it and I know they have their next collaboration releasing in January 2020 and you better believe that shit is on pre-order!
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