The House by the Lake by Ella Carey

The House by the Lake Book Cover The House by the Lake
Ella Carey
Fiction
Lake Union Publishing
March 29, 2016

Anna is content with her well-ordered life in San Francisco. But her world is turned upside down when her beloved grandfather, Max, reveals a startling secret: Anna is part of an aristocratic family who lost everything during World War II. What's more, Max was forced to leave behind a precious item over seventy years ago in their estate in old Prussia. It's now his ardent wish that Anna retrieve it. Anna burns with questions as she heads for Germany: What memento could be so important to her grandfather? And why did he keep their history hidden? As she searches for answers, she finds herself drawn to Wil, a man who may hold the key to unlock the mystery. Together they discover that her family's secrets are linked with an abandoned apartment in Paris, and these secrets go deeper than she ever imagined. Alternating between 1930s Europe and the present, The House by the Lake illuminates the destiny of a family caught in the tumult of history.

History Haunts Us…

…even when we think we left it behind

You may recall a few months ago when I reviewed Paris Time Capsule by Ella Carey.  The book took a fictitious look at the events leading up to the discovery of an apartment in Paris, unopened since World War II.

Ms. Carey takes us on a connected adventure in The House by the Lake.  In this book, we are taken to Germany to solve the mystery surrounding Max, who left his home and never returned.  He asks his granddaughter, Anna, to return to his ancestral home and retrieve something he left behind.

The story intersects with Ms. Carey’s previous story in unexpected ways as the two stories happen simultaneously and decades apart.  Carey weaves the details intricately so that as it progresses, you find that you are building to crescendo and you didn’t even notice.

As we are taken through the history of a small German town in the years leading up to World War II and a noble family working through this period, the reader is readily transported to Christmas at a Schloss in 1940 where young love is budding – and then to current-time Berlin where Anna is finding herself a possible love of her own.

I wasn’t sure I believed that Ms. Carey could pull off a second book with the same feeling without the real-life basis on which to start.

I was (happily) wrong.

This sequel is equally gripping and beautifully told through the eyes of the people living it, and also in those who are searching for the truth – in another time and another place.

I became so emotionally invested in these characters – in what they’ve been forced to experience, what they have foregone.

Though this book can easily function as a standalone novel, I highly recommend starting with Paris Time Capsule.  With that background information, it will add yet another layer of woven detail to this story as you read it.

All-in-all, I highly recommend this book… like – go get it… NOW! (It’s also currently free on Kindle Unlimited – even better!)

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