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From modern-day England to the early days of the Preraphaelite movement, Lauren Willig's That Summer takes readers on an unputdownable journey through a mysterious old house, a hidden love affair, and one woman's search for the truth about her past—and herself.
"Willig reaches deep into her characters' souls to depict tragedy, triumph and the depth of love." —RT Book Reviews (4 ½ stars)
2009: When Julia Conley hears that she has inherited a house outside London from an unknown great-aunt, she assumes it's a joke. She hasn't been back to England since the car crash that killed her mother when she was six, an event she remembers only in her nightmares. But when she arrives at Herne Hill to sort through the house—with the help of her cousin Natasha and sexy antiques dealer Nicholas—bits of memory start coming back. And then she discovers a pre-Raphaelite painting, hidden behind the false back of an old wardrobe, and a window onto the house's shrouded history begins to open...
1849: Imogen Grantham has spent nearly a decade trapped in a loveless marriage to a much older man, Arthur. The one bright spot in her life is her step-daughter, Evie, a high-spirited sixteen year old who is the closest thing to a child Imogen hopes to have. But everything changes when three young painters come to see Arthur's collection of medieval artifacts, including Gavin Thorne, a quiet man with the unsettling ability to read Imogen better than anyone ever has. When Arthur hires Gavin to paint her portrait, none of them can guess what the hands of fate have set in motion.
"[Willig] brings an easy, contemporary charm to her characters, ensuring the perfect beach read."—Kirkus Reviews
Praise for The Ashford Affair:
"An artfully woven saga." —Kate Alcott, New York Times bestselling author of The Dressmaker
"Rich with detail and historical imagination, The Ashford Affair evokes the lives and passions of the interwar era with harrowing precision. The enthralling mystery kept me up late into the night, and the characters will remain with me forever." —Beatriz Williams, author of OVERSEAS
"[A]n extraordinary saga.... Rich with romance, mystery, memorable characters.... This is a novel that will transfix readers as Willig reaches deep into her characters' souls to depict tragedy, triumph and the depth of love." —RT Book Reviews (4 ½ stars)
"A lavishly detailed saga that readers will devour." —Deanna Raybourn, New York Times bestselling author of A Spear of Summer Glass
"Willig's crossover into mainstream fiction heralds riches to come." —Kirkus Reviews