From Goodreads: “In Second World War Bath, young, naïve wireless engineer Will meets German refugee Elsa Klein: she is sophisticated, witty and wordly, and at last his life seems to make sense . . . until, soon after, the newly married couple’s home is bombed, and Will awakes from the wreckage to find himself alone.
No one has heard of Elsa Klein. They say he was never married.
Seventy years later, Laura is a social worker battling her way out of depression and off medication. Her new case is a strange, isolated old man whose house hasn’t changed since the war. A man who insists his wife vanished many, many years before. Everyone thinks he’s suffering dementia. But Laura begins to suspect otherwise . . .
From Keith Stuart, author of the much-loved Richard & Judy bestseller A Boy Made of Blocks, comes a stunning, emotional novel about an impossible mystery and a true love that refuses to die. “
Wow this book was amazing! As soon as I finished it I wanted to read it all over again, something I never do!
I loved Days of Wonder when I read it a couple of years ago, and was so excited when I received an email from the publisher to read the author’s latest book. Well it grabbed me from the first page! I had to know more about Will and his wife Elsa and if Laura was able to help him.
I love dual timeline stories and this is one of the best I’ve read. It’s told through Will’s journals from the late 1930s, and from Laura’s point of view in 2007.
I loved Will, Elsa and Laura, they were fabulous characters who I believed in and wanted the best for. I sympathised with Laura as she struggled to make sense of Will’s situation. Was he telling her the truth or was the dementia making him make everything up about Elsa?
This was one of those books that captivated me and made feel like I was inside the book with the characters. I could see everything that was happening to them and could almost feel the electricity and here the buzz of the radio in the house when strange things were happening every time Laura visited Will. She didn’t know if it was her imagination, the withdrawal affects from her medication or something spooky going on! I didn’t know either and really hoped it was real. There were some fantastic reveals in this story with one near the end that really took me by surprise.
I loved the period details from the wartime story and went scurrying off to Google to check out Sham’s Castle. I can easily see this as a film, it’s ripe for a book to screen adaption, and I can imagine David Warner playing Will.
I highly recommend this one if you enjoy dual timeline novels partly set in World War Two.
Thanks so much to Clara Diaz at Little Brown Group for my digital copy via the NetGalley app.