A tale of two centuries
If walls could talk...
I read this book a few months ago, but I wanted to save my review for when I started my Holiday Gift Guide because I think it will make an awesome gift for lovers of historical fiction.
This is the story of two women, a century apart.
The Address by Fiona Davis (author of The Dollhouse) starts in New York City in 1884. Sara Smythe, a housekeeper in London, receives a job offer to be the manager of the Dakota, a swanky NY apartment house. It's the opportunity of a lifetime for a woman like her, the opportunity to forge a career, to move to America....and the opportunity to spend more time with architect Theodore Camden, who also lives in the Dakota. The trouble is, Theo's wife and children live there, too. Theo and Sara find themselves in an entanglement, and events ensue that lead to Sara's admission into an insane asylum. When she is eventually released and heads back to the Dakota, only to find out that she has been accused of an unthinkable crime.
Fast forward to 1985. Bailey Camden is freshly graduated from rehab, and now she finds herself with no job, nowhere to live, and no money. Bailey's grandfather, one-time ward of the famous architect Theodore Camden, so one would think she'd benefit from the Camden family's deep estate pockets, but because she's not biologically related to the wealthy Camdens, she's not entitled to a dime. That benefit falls to Melinda, Camden's biological great-granddaughter. Melinda hires Bailey to oversee the renovation of the old Dakota apartments, a renovation project that will all but completely change the historic character of the apartment in which Theodore Camden lived - and died - in, after being murdered by a certain Sara Smythe.
The two stories parallel each other, tales of two women who struggle to deal with the excess of the ages in which they are living. The Dakota holds within its walls many dark secrets, and those secrets can't be contained forever. As the walls come down during the renovation, they let loose some dark truths, and Bailey's eyes begin to be opened to what she thought she know about Theodore Camden -- and the woman who killed him.
This is an absolutely engrossing read, perfect for snuggling up with on a cold winter night. Perfect for lovers of historical fiction, stories about women fighting against the norms of their time, and anyone who loves a great story. The Address makes a perfect holiday gift.