Publication Date: June 10, 2015
In The Family Divided (A Guernsey Novel) by Anne Allen, Andy Bastite is on a quest to uncover the secrets of his family’s past. His father, Edmund, lost his place in the family and Andy wants to clear his name. With the help of divorced writer Charlotte Townsend, will he be able to uncover the truth and restore Edmund’s reputation? The Family Divided is the fourth book in the Guernsey series.
Each book of the Guernsey series stands alone but calls back to previous books. Charlotte appeared in the third book, Guernsey Retreat as a friend of the female main character. Charlotte is blocked creatively when she meets with Andy, hears his story and engages in his obsession offering to help him research to find the truth and clarify a very controversial family history. Adding to the interest is that one family member made a huge windfall off of the supposition of the guilt of another.
Guernsey is, as usual in an Anne Allen novel, the star of the piece. Guernsey is an island in the English Channel, off of Normandy, which was occupied by the Nazis during World War II. For more information about the occupation, look up the non-fiction work titled Guernsey Evacuees by Gillian Mawson. Guernsey is described in loving detail from restaurants to landmarks. Allen’s descriptions combine the peaceful atmosphere and lush landscape of the English Cotswolds, with the boutique style small town decadence of coastal France.
Andy’s grandfather, Edmund, was accused of being a Nazi informer and, as a result of the scandal and mysterious death, his brother inherited the family’s great wealth. Andy’s father, Jim, is not at all interested in clearing the name of his branch of the family and Andy is consumed with a need to know why. Andy has his own life and a career as an architect but he feels as though there’s a part of him missing. Both Charlotte and Andy are reluctant to take any steps toward romance, but Allen builds their growing connection organically. They each struggle with their demons as they connect with each other with a more intimate level over time. While that’s a process that sounds as though it would drag, the historical mystery is interwoven in such a way that the characters are always moving forward. There is a lost treasure aspect to the story but the real goal is vindication an to discover the truth.
Allen’s writing style is very graceful. Her descriptions are flow and are visual. The Family Divided (A Guernsey Novel) is the result of much practice on the part of the author and is well edited and quite polished. The best way to describe the tone of The Family Divided is warm and lovely. For lovers of history and romance alike, The Family Divided will leave you with a broad smile at the end.
I adored The Family Divided (A Guernsey Novel). If you’re looking for a read for an afternoon of dappled sunshine, there is no perfect book.
Read an excerpt and buy The Family Divided (The Guernsey Novels Book 4) by Anne Allen on