The Legacy of Eden by Nelle Davy
ARC, Paperback, 384 pages
January 24, 2012
Genre: Epic Family Saga, Historical
Source: Received for review as part of Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc blog tour
“An epic, sweeping tale of a dynasty rotten to the core, driven by ambition, lust – and hatred.
For generations, Aurelia was the crowning glory of more than three thousand acres of Iowa farmland and golden cornfields. The estate was a monument to matriarch Lavinia Hathaway’s dream to elevate the family name—no matter what relative or stranger she had to destroy in the process. It was a desperation that wrought the downfall of the Hathaways—and the once-prosperous farm.
Now the last inhabitant of the decaying old home has died—alone. None of the surviving members of the Hathaway family want anything to do with the farm, the land or the memories.
Especially Meredith Pincetti. Now living in New York City, for seventeen years Lavinia’s youngest grandchild has tried to forget everything about her family and her past. But with the receipt of a pleading letter, Meredith is again thrust into conflict with the legacy that destroyed her family’s -great name.
Back at Aurelia, Meredith must confront the rise and fall of the Hathaway family…and her own part in their mottled history.”This was a book like I haven’t read before; it sort of defies being placed in a distinct genre category for me – part historical, part family saga, and part gothic drama. We learn about each generation of the family on the Aurelia farm – her Grandfather and his siblings, her Father and his siblings, and then finally Meredith and her sisters. You get some historical references to World War II, the Vietnam War, hippies – but really you learn what life was like in small farming communities.
The first couple of chapters were a little slow going for me, mostly because you are quickly swept into the family history and I had a hard time discerning who was who and also who was telling the story. We are basically following Meredith through her memories and what she knows of her family’s rise and ultimate downfall.
As each generation is fleshed out we really get to see more and more of the cracks and problems within the family – each of them has some epic problems. You can start to see how things could go wrong over time but the author really leaves you hanging as to what ultimately brought the family to its lowest until the final chapters.
After I got through the first couple of chapters the story took off for me and raced at a breakneck pace until the very end. You will find yourself wrapped up in the characters and not wanting to put the book down because you just have to know what they did next. While this wasn’t a typical type of read for me, I enjoyed it immensely
You can visit Davy’s website for additional information about the book. If you would like to preview the story before reading it, why not try out this excerpt of the book (scroll down the page about halfway)?
You can also watch the book trailer below.
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