The blog tour train has arrived. Hello to Beatriz Williams who’s new novel, A Certain Age was released earlier this month by Harper. Here’s the blurb:
As the freedom of the Jazz Age transforms New York City, the iridescent Mrs. Theresa Marshall of Fifth Avenue – a beautiful socialite of a certain age – has done the unthinkable: she’s fallen in love with her young lover, Captain Octavian Rofrano, a handsome aviator and hero of the Great War. But though times are changing, divorce for a woman of Theresa’s wealth and social standing is out of the question.
When Theresa’s bachelor brother, Ox, decides to tie the knot with the youngest daughter of a newly wealthy inventor, Theresa enlists her lover to present the family’s diamond rose ring to pretty ingénue, Miss Sophie Fortescue – and to check into the background of this little-known family. Yet even as he uncovers a shocking secret, Octavian falls under Sophie’s spell…
Divided loyalties and dangerous revelations lead to a shocking transgression and eventually Theresa must make a choice that will change them all forever.
My verdict on A Certain Age…
It took me a couple of chapters to settle into this book but once I had, I found it to be very compelling to the point where I couldn’t stop reading. This book beautifully captures what I imagine the twenties to have been like and the imagery is so vivid. I felt like I was in New York at the beginning of the 1920’s witnessing the lives of these characters.
The plot is developed well and has a good number of twists and turns. It didn’t turn out quite the way I imagined. There is mystery surrounding this story. You know me, I love a good mystery.
The story is told from the point of view of two women; Theresa (she’s been married to a wealthy husband for a number of years,) and 19 year old Sophie.
Sophie is very naïve. She believes she has an idea of how her life is going to work out especially when she finds herself engaged to Theresa’s brother, Ox.
Both voices were very distinctive. Both women are a little trapped by their circumstance even though there is a distance in age.
For me, Theresa is a little bit of a tragic character. She’s not what society of the time would call a young woman, her husband is very absent and she’s raised her children. All she wants is love which is finds in the form of Octavian (who happens to be about twenty years her junior.)
I liked this dynamic between Theresa and Octavian. He really does love her and wants to marry her. It’s all quite romantic. Things do get a lot more complicated as the story progresses. I really did not see the end coming.
I really liked this book. The atmosphere that Beatriz creates is wonderful. This is perfect holiday reading and I recommend it.
A graduate of Stanford University with an MBA from Columbia, Beatriz spent several years in New York and London hiding her early attempts at fiction, first on company laptops as a corporate and communications strategy consultant, and then as an at-home producer of small persons.