The Golden Hour

The Golden Hour

A Novel

Book - 2019
Average Rating:
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7
A dazzling epic of WWII-era Nassau - a hotbed of spies, traitors, and the most infamous couple of the age, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. The Bahamas, 1941. Newly-widowed Leonora "Lulu" Randolph arrives in Nassau to investigate the Duke and Duchess of Windsor for a New York society magazine. But as she infiltrates the Duke and Duchess's social circle, and the powerful cabal that controls the islands' political and financial affairs, she uncovers evidence that beneath the glister of Wallis and Edward's marriage lies an ugly - and even treasonous - reality. Then Nassau's wealthiest man is murdered in one of the most notorious cases of the century, and the resulting cover-up reeks of royal privilege.
Publisher: New York : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperColllinsPublishers, ©2019.
ISBN: 9780062834751
Characteristics: 468 pages ;,24 cm.

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PineSisken
Oct 19, 2019

There is something to please almost any reader in this beautiful novel: mystery, romance, espionage, history, setting. I am certain that this author has a very devoted fan base. Lucky for me "The Golden Hour" was my first book by Williams. I will keep reading her works, for sure. The beautiful cover illustration initially caught my eye. (The author has an interesting, pleasing website.) I found the story sweeping in its coverage of different time periods, historical setting in both time and place and interesting characters real and imagined. Highly recommended.

l
lilypad_1
Sep 19, 2019

Found this book v. interesting, historically speaking. I do not like it when authors go back and forth between people and time periods, it just is too distracting to me so I read one persons story and then read the other person's story. So sad that women were blamed for postpartum depression but then in some cases they still are or they blame themselves. At least now it is more recognizable and treatable.

6
6GmaBooks
Sep 09, 2019

Waited in line a long time for this book. After one-third of the way through, nothing makes me want to pick it up and continue. It flips storylines and timeframes so often I am having trouble getting involved or keeping up with the characters. I hate giving a rating if I don’t read it through. I just don’t want to. That has to be worth something.

ArapahoeKati Sep 05, 2019

I don't think that this was Beatriz's strongest novel but her writing is so compelling and her settings are so vivid that you get completely swept away. I wasn't quite prepared for three storylines, so keep that in mind when reading. But I'll always read a Beatriz novel for the writing, the romance and the character twists.

j
Jersey_Girl
Aug 07, 2019

OOPS! I meant to give this book 2 1/2 stars and after it posted, I realized I accidentally only gave it 1 1/2 stars! Sorry about that. You know, the wonderful thing about comments is when somebody rates a book with lots of stars and somebody else doesn't give it very many! You just gotta read the comments and decide for yourself....right? I thought about giving this book 3 stars, but in the end, I gave it 2 1/2. For me what saved this book was the last 1/3, or maybe the last 1/4. I was really bored during the first 2/3 or 3/4 of this book. Almost didn't finish it. I have to be honest....I really dislike books that jump around in time. And this one jumped around with 3 different time/year segments. I was doing pretty well until I went on to read one segment and discovered IT had jumped forward by 5 years itself! The book was kind of interesting, with references to the Bahamas being "governed" by their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. Except, everyone knew that she was NOT a Royal Highness...her official title was Her Grace the Duchess of Windsor. BUT if you wanted to stay in "good" with them, you called her Your Royal Highness and/or never corrected it when someone else called her that. Anyway, I'm not going to reveal the ending, but as I said above, the last part of the book was the best for me. Almost made me give it 3 stars....but nope. I decided on 2 1/2 instead. Read it for yourself and you decide.

t
tsenko
Jul 21, 2019

A thoroughly enjoyable book that kept me up late at night and convinced me to ignore all of the other things I should have been doing instead of reading. A unique setting, at least in my reading experience, in the Bahamas during the governorship of the Duke of Windsor is one of the key points of historical interest.

The strength of this book lies in the likability of the primary fictional characters and its ability to make you care about what is happening to them. I’m personally tired of what I consider to be an over used device in current literature of alternating between two stories taking place in different times and places. This is yet another book that follows that pattern and makes you jump back and forth from 1900 to 1941-43 each time you start a new chapter. You get caught up in one storyline and then the flow is disrupted and you are jerked into the other story. I forgive it here, in large part, because I was drawn into both stories. In the end, of course they were tied together. I must say, however, that the ending felt rushed and a complicated situation was resolved with scant detail. That situation could have been a fascinating book all on its own.

Telling two stories in one book meant the primary story in Nassau was not as fully developed as it could have been. I wish we could have spent more time there and would have enjoyed delving more deeply into the events in 1941-43 as well as into the secondary characters.

There are a few jarring bits of dialogue that seem to be lifted from a 1940s Humphrey Bogart movie, but I will trust the author was being authentic. It just felt almost like a caricature when I read these snippets.

I recommend this book as a satisfying work of historical fiction which includes some suspense, mystery and romance.

Chapel_Hill_MarthaW Jun 27, 2019

Beatriz Williams is generally a safe bet for me, as far as authors go, and this book was no exception; I loved the wartime Bahamas setting, as well as the chapters interspersed that were set around the turn of the century. Her portrayal of postpartum depression, at a time when people didn’t have a word for this condition and the woman was blamed for it, was especially emotionally powerful, and, as always, I closed this book eager to pick up whatever she writes next.

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