All month I’m resolved to read nothing but books set in England, and The House at Tyneford has proved to be an excellent selection! Imagine growing up next to a ghost village, where a large manor house stands abandoned and the people that inhabited the surrounding countryside have long since vanished. That is exactly the story behind author Natasha Solomons, and her decision to research and write a novel with that village as the backdrop.
The story begins in 1938, when 19 year old Elise Landau must leave Austria, as the Nazi-governed state becomes increasingly dangerous for the Jews that reside there. Though born to the finer things in life, she accepts a post as servant in a great English house – Tyneford. Through Elise’s story, we experience the vast changes Britain faces as Europe becomes embroiled in war, and the consequences that touch lives for years to come.
Solomons does a marvelous job presenting her research in an informative and captivating way, with the charm of the English countryside and the tension of World War II. Top that off with a romance and there’s one fine novel here. Loved it!
4 stars (out of 5)
Published in 2011