First Impressions: G115 The Review of Bristol House by Beverly Swerling
Author: Beverly Swerling
Year it was published: 2013
In the tradition of Kate Mosse, a swiftly-paced mystery that stretches from modern London to Tudor England
In modern-day London, architectural historian and recovering alcoholic Annie Kendall hopes to turn her life around and restart her career by locating several long-missing pieces of ancient Judaica. Geoff Harris, an investigative reporter, is soon drawn into her quest, both by romantic interest and suspicions about the head of the Shalom Foundation, the organization sponsoring her work. He’s also a dead ringer for the ghost of a monk Annie believes she has seen at the flat she is subletting in Bristol House.
In 1535, Tudor London is a very different city, one in which monks are being executed by Henry VIII and Jews are banished. In this treacherous environment of religious persecution, Dom Justin, a Carthusian monk, and a goldsmith known as the Jew of Holborn must navigate a shadowy world of intrigue involving Thomas Cromwell, Jewish treasure, and sexual secrets. Their struggles shed light on the mysteries Annie and Geoff aim to puzzle out—at their own peril.
This riveting dual-period narrative seamlessly blends a haunting supernatural thriller with vivid historical fiction. Beverly Swerling, widely acclaimed for her City of Dreams series, delivers a bewitching and epic story of a historian and a monk, half a millennium apart, whose destinies are on a collision course.
Sometimes I enjoyed detailed descriptions, but only if I feel that they add something to the book or to the characters or to the scenery. Here I feel that the detailed descriptions, especially in first few pages, didn't really add anything to the story or to getting to know the character, which I feel is pretty important. I also think there are some mistakes that kind of bugged me, but that's about it.
I don't think I'll continue reading the story
3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)