The Ashford Affair by Lauren Willig

15701533Lauren Willig is one of my very favorite authors and this book is exactly why. It’s similar to the Pink Carnation series as there is a modern plot to go along with the historical plot and the modern folks are related to the historical folks. But the historical folks are set in the 1910s and 1920s instead of the days of Napoleon. No spies here either, just women trying to deal with the circumstances of their lives as best they can.

Being so obsessed with Downton Abbey, it was quite easy for me to fall into a world of the daughters of an Earl, preparing to do the Season and all the expectations that come along with that. But even without that, I would have naturally fallen for Addie and Bea because the characters are so well-drawn. Willig paints things so vividly with her words that it almost seemed like the script for a movie instead of just a novel. There were definitely plot twists in this part that I had not expected and though I wasn’t entirely on board for how things wrap up, that’s the thing about history. Unless you lived it, you’ll never know exactly what happened out there.

Clementine was also delightful and I was immediately drawn to her story as well. Her love interest is rather predictable (especially if you’ve seen Clueless as many times as I have!), but still realistic and well-done. She wasn’t the typical chick-lit heroine and she dealt with very real issues with depth instead of glossing over them. The ending wrapped up a bit too quickly for me, but I understand the need for resolution.

I’m always sad when I finish a Lauren Willig book because I just want to read another one. But this was a fantastic read and I couldn’t put it down, so there was no way to stretch it out over a period of days. Grab it if you can; it’ll be worth your while indeed!