An Unfinished Tapestry

Susan Leslie, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (501p) ISBN 978-0-312-02995-1
In Victorian England, destitute orphan Lillith Chatfield replies hopefully to an ambiguously worded advertisement for what she supposes is the position of governess at Darby Hall. But on arriving at the great baronial manse in the north country, she is shocked to learn that she is expected to serve as wife to reclusive Damien Darby, wheelchair-bound and darkly handsome. Despite her initial revulsion, Lillith soon finds herself caught up in the Darby legacy. While living at the Hall, she uncovers some of the family's secrets--sibling incest, quarrels, murder and guilt--and eventually even comes to love and marry Damien. Yet their union is brief, bound up with the tragedy that dogs the heavily burdened Darbys. While the reader becomes involved in the unraveling of the mystery (Darby Hall conjures up Du Maurier's Manderley as it might be with multiple occupancy), at times the heroine's self-descriptions are awkward and cumbersome. Leslie, as Evelyn Grey, is the author of Camberleigh and Mayfair. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989
Release date: 01/01/1989
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