World War II comes to Farleigh Place, the ancestral home of Lord Westerham and his five daughters, when a soldier with a failed parachute falls to his death on the estate. After his uniform and possessions raise suspicions, MI5 operative and family friend Ben Cresswell is covertly tasked with determining if the man is a German spy. The assignment also offers Ben the chance to be near Lord Westerham’s middle daughter, Pamela, whom he furtively loves. But Pamela has her own secret: she has taken a job at Bletchley Park, the British code-breaking facility.
As Ben follows a trail of spies and traitors, which may include another member of Pamela’s family, he discovers that some within the realm have an appalling, history-altering agenda. Can he, with Pamela’s help, stop them before England falls?
Inspired by the events and people of World War II, writer Rhys Bowen crafts a sweeping and riveting saga of class, family, love, and betrayal.
With surprisingly jovial and lighthearted touch the author tells us a story of an aristocratic family and their friends in England during the Second World War. In the Farleigh Field is a tale of family, friends, life, and loss with a touch of mystery and few spine-chilling moments facing the enemy in the midst of the war.
The story has a large cast of characters, from the Westerham family to everyone in the village, to people from London to Paris. Several of these characters have their chance to tell about their life during the war and their contribution to the fight against the enemy. With such a large cast of characters in the story telling the events from their points of views, it isn't possible to get to know any of them in depth, and most of them I found a bit one dimensional.
The story has an addictively smooth flow in it making it easy to get lost in the pages, in the world of Westerham family. There's a steady but slow rhythm to the tale, you keep reading and it feels like nothing has happened until you realize the plot has moved on leaps and bounds, and the most unobtrusive details has moved the story forward, where the little things are the big things changing the direction of the tale and the future to the family and friends.
I have read plenty of tragic, heartbreaking tales from this time period in Europe, and In The Farleigh Field has a unique, could I say resilient feeling to it. It shows the stereotypical thinking of the different cultures involved in the war, the English were cold, the French overly passionate, the Germans organized etc. And even the sisters each has their own trite role in the family from the flamboyant, to the matronly, to the one making a difference, and the one man everyone looks over might turn out to be the one to save the day.
A charming and elegant story of the people who made a difference during the terrible times in the European history. The little pieces of information through the story that touch the true history of the time made it intriguing, the witty dialog that mostly carried the plot forward was delightful as well as nearly humoristically sarcastic at times. Overall I found the story entertaining, the scenery the author painted was beautiful, and the mystery of the Ring enticing.
~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
Rhys Bowen is the New York Times bestselling author of over thirty mystery novels. Her work includes the Molly Murphy mysteries, set in 1900s New York City, and the Royal Spyness novels, featuring a minor royal in 1930s England, as well as the Constable Evenas mysteries about a police constable in contemporary Wales. Rhys’s works have won fourteen awards to date, including multiple Agatha, Anthony, and MacAvity awards. Her books have been translated into many languages, and she has fans from around the world, including the 12,000 who visit her Facebook page daily. She is a transplanted Brit who now divides her time between California and Arizona.
Connect with her at rhysbowen.com