Friday, May 18, 2012

Book Review - "The Pursuit of Lucy Banning"

Olivia Newport has made me a fan of her writing with her first book of The Avenue of Dreams series, "The Pursuit of Lucy Banning."  Lucy is a privileged woman living on Prairie Avenue, the home to Chicago's wealthy families.  Lucy is engaged to be married to a long-time family friend and yet she is not happy.  Lucy knows there is so much more to life than planning dresses to wear to the numerous society events.  Lucy is involved with charity work at a local orphanage and is secretly taking a college course.  When Lucy meets her brother's friend, Will, she finds herself drawn to him and thinking about him all of the time and although she has known for awhile that she cannot go through with her marriage to Daniel, each day she knows this even more.  The bond and friendship that grows between Lucy and Charlotte, her maid, saves both of their lives as they are both harboring secrets and this unlikely friendship may be the best either has had. 

This book is very well-written and the depth of the characters and the story is so much more than I expected!  Lucy is not only seeking rights for women, but for everyone as she does not believe people should have special rights just because they have money or a certain last name.  Mental illness is addressed as well, and this is not just touched upon, but the symptoms are evident throughout the interactions of the characters and it is dealt with instead of brushed to the side.  Charlotte is one of my favorite characters and there are still so many secrets about her and her life that are yet undiscovered and I am hoping book two will answer so many questions, but also have Lucy and Will playing prominent roles in the story as well!  I am looking forward to other books in this series and I encourage anyone who enjoys historical fiction to read this book!

“Available May 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

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