I very, very rarely read “gothic” novels or those that hint at otherwordly tales as I tend to be a more literal reader but once in a while a synopsis intrigues or an author is a long time favorite. Danielle Trussoni is new to me and her new book The Ancestor looked intriguing so I thank TLC Book Tours for sending me a free copy for my honest review.
About The Ancestor:
Hardcover: 368 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (April 7, 2020)
From the New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author of the Angelology series comes a bewitching gothic novel of suspense that plunges readers into a world of dark family secrets, the mysteries of human genetics, and the burden of family inheritance.
It feels like a fairy tale when Alberta ”Bert” Monte receives a letter addressed to “Countess Alberta Montebianco” at her Hudson Valley, New York, home that claims she’s inherited a noble title, money, and a castle in Italy. While Bert is more than a little skeptical, the mystery of her aristocratic family’s past, and the chance to escape her stressful life for a luxury holiday in Italy, is too good to pass up.
At first, her inheritance seems like a dream come true: a champagne-drenched trip on a private jet to Turin, Italy; lawyers with lists of artwork and jewels bequeathed to Bert; a helicopter ride to an ancestral castle nestled in the Italian Alps below Mont Blanc; a portrait gallery of ancestors Bert never knew existed; and a cellar of expensive vintage wine for Bert to drink.
But her ancestry has a dark side, and Bert soon learns that her family history is particularly complicated. As Bert begins to unravel the Montebianco secrets, she begins to realize her true inheritance lies not in a legacy of ancestral treasures, but in her very genes.
About the Author:
Danielle Trussoni is the New York Times, USA Today, and Sunday Times Top Ten bestselling author of the supernatural thrillers Angelology and Angelopolis. She currently writers the Horror column for the New York Times Book Review and has recently served as a jurist for the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction. Trussoni holds an MFA in Fiction from the prestigious Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she won the Michener-Copernicus Society of America award. Her books have been translated into over thirty languages. She lives in the Hudson River Valley with her family and her pug Fly.
Alberta Monte is just trying to live her life in New York; just sort of getting by in a complicated relationship with her estranged husband. Then one day she receives a letter notifying her that she is the last heir of a long established noble family from Italy. To claim all that comes with she needs to go to Turin then on to the ancestral castle located deep in the Alps. She both excitedly and reluctantly agrees and sets off to learn the secrets of her family.
She is dropped off, expecting to only stay a week but she soon learns that her ancestry is not one she can easily abandon. What she finds at the castle is a sick and aging relative and a history she does not understand. As she learns about the family she was born into and their relationships with the people born to the region she finds that there is far more to her inheritance than money, a castle and the title.
Ms. Trussoni has created a creepy, gothic tale that takes place in modern times but has the old world feels these type of tales require. You don’t really know to expect or what is going on until the end and even then you are left wondering. Which is as it should be with these types of tales. It kept me turning the pages as spent a lazy Saturday just enjoying the book.
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