Friday, March 15, 2019

The Woman in the Lake
by Nicola Cornick

Publisher: Graydon House
Pages: 320
Format: book
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  London, 1765

Lady Isabella Gerard, a respectable member of Georgian society, orders her maid to take her new golden gown and destroy it, its shimmering beauty tainted by the actions of her brutal husband the night before.

Three months later, Lord Gerard stands at the shoreline of the lake, looking down at a woman wearing the golden gown. As the body slowly rolls over to reveal her face, it’s clear this was not his intended victim…

250 Years Later…

When a gown she stole from a historic home as a child is mysteriously returned to Fenella Brightwell, it begins to possess her in exactly the same way that it did as a girl. Soon the fragile new life Fen has created for herself away from her abusive ex-husband is threatened at its foundations by the gown’s power over her until she can't tell what is real and what is imaginary.

As Fen uncovers more about the gown and Isabella’s story, she begins to see the parallels with her own life. When each piece of history is revealed, the gown—and its past—seems to possess her more and more, culminating in a dramatic revelation set to destroy her sanity.



Kritters Thoughts:  This was quite the gothic historical fiction with a hint of magic of sorts and I didn't completely love it.  

With a golden dress at the heart of the story and a prologue that sets the reader up for guessing, there were moments where I semi enjoyed the book and then moments where it just didn't completely work for me.  In the historical storyline there are two narrators, the lady of the house Lady Isabella Gerard and her maid Constance.  In the current storyline Fenella Brightwell takes the lead and I think it was her storyline that I liked less.  

Lady Isabella Gerard is in an abusive relationship and she decides to escape to the country to possibly change her situation for the better.  With her maid in tow, she goes to the country and oh the drama ensues.  I love a historical storyline where the woman is trying to better her situation and since it is in the past and all of her wealth and prestige is in the man she is marrying it makes it harder to make her life better - for some reason this is all interesting to me.  The use of the dress in this storyline was so interesting and I loved how it was more than just a dress, but had a purpose.

The thing that I didn't enjoy about the current situation was the magic behind the dress.  I felt as though it took on a life of its own and it just wasn't entertaining.  I felt as though it took away from the story and I could have liked the current storyline if the dress had just been a dress.  

If you are a reader of more gothic stories that you could like this one more than I did.  I wanted more from it in different places.  


Rating: enjoyable, but didn't leave me wanting more


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from TLC Book Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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