Decisions and Desire

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Familial heirlooms and legacies can carry with them meaning, a sense of identity, and responsibility. The Address by Fiona Davis explores the meaning that family carries across a century.

Sara Smythe is an efficient manager of hotel maids in her London job, but having caught the attention of a rising American architect Theodore Camden, Sara is persuaded to move across the ocean to be the lady managerette of a new hotel-type apartment residence called the Dakota. While learning her new duties, Sara and Theo become close, drawing them into a delicate situation that causes Sara to face some daunting issues. 100 years later, in 1985, Bailey Camden is struggling to get back on her feet after a stint in rehab. By finding a place to stay in her cousin Melinda’s Dakota apartment, Bailey is charged with renovating the historic space to her cousin’s eclectic design tastes. While working to please her cousin, Bailey begins to uncover some intriguing details about their family through the Dakota’s history that could mean changing who is entitled to the Camden trust fund.

A fast-paced read that straddles historical eras, as well as fact and fiction, the narrative was entertaining and engaging as details are uncovered. Moving between Sara and Bailey’s lives, separated by a century, their connection gradually strengthens as Bailey investigates the history of the Dakota and Theo Camden; however, the reveal of how exactly they are connected was rather predictable, as was the actual perpetrator of Theo’s demise. Both Sara and Bailey were enjoyable characters, with a spark to their characters that helps portray them as acting upon their own agency, particularly through their quick-thinking and strong sense of humor.

Overall, I’d give it a 4 out of 5 stars.

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