#1 New York Times bestselling author Danielle Steel tells the uplifting story of an ordinary woman embracing an extraordinary adventure, and the daring choice that transforms her world.
Winona Farmington once dreamed of graduating from college, moving to New York City, and pursuing a career in publishing. Then real life got in the way when she left college and returned to her small Michigan hometown to care for her sick mother.
Years later, stuck in a dead-end job and an unsatisfying relationship, Winnie has concluded that dreams were meant for others. She consoles herself with binge-watching the British television series that she loves, Beauchamp Hall, enthralled by the sumptuous period drama set on a great Norfolk estate in the 1920s. The rich upstairs-downstairs world brilliantly brought to life by superb actors is the ultimate in escapism.
On the day Winnie is passed over for a long-overdue promotion, she is also betrayed by her boyfriend and her best friend. Heartbroken, she makes the first impulsive decision of her conventional life—which changes everything.
She packs her bags and flies to England to see the town where Beauchamp Hall is filmed. The quaint B & B where she stays feels like home. The brother and sister who live in the castle where the show is filmed, rich in titles but poor in cash, are more like long-lost friends than British nobility. And the show itself, with its colorful company and behind-the-scenes affairs, is a drama all its own. Winnie’s world comes alive on the set of the show.
What happens next is the stuff of dreams, as Winnie takes the boldest leap of all. Beauchamp Hallreminds us to follow our dreams. . . . You never know what magic will happen!
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Fly Girl’s Review:
I’ve been reading Danielle Steel since I was a young lady. (I won’t go into how far back that is.) Her books always resonated with me because she shows these fantastical scenes of wealth and power and places. I just loved them. When I had the opportunity to read this one, I jumped on it. It was not what I expected from her. It was rather tame.
By that I mean there wasn’t much drama or deep luscious romance. It is a story about a woman whose life never took the path she expected and has finally had enough of her boring existence. She makes some radical changes in her life and moves to England to see the location a well known TV show is being filmed at. It transports her into another world as she lives the life of unexpected decisions. She finally finds romance, but from the most unlikely place. In the mean time, she grows stronger and more determined to make something of her life that isn’t boring and makes her happy.
So those are the endings we always expect from Danielle, however this one gets there very slowly and literally jumps into her HEA rather than letting the romance develop. The other parts of her life slowly build to a crescendo we expect. So I guess that is really the best part of the story. One thing I really liked was her portrayal of the titled family trying to save their property. It reminds me a little bit the Biltmore house in Asheville, NC and all the changes that family had to make to be able to keep their property. Based on what I’ve seen of my travels in England, she is pretty much on the money of what they do to save it. I’m not giving this a high score because of how slow the story is and the lack of heartrending romance. If you love Danielle Steel, you’ll read this one and appreciate the other elements of the story. But for me, I wanted romance.
3.5 of 5 propellers
Connect with Danielle Steel
Danielle Steel has sold 650 million copies of her books internationally, and every one of her books is a bestseller. She is published in 69 countries and 43 languages.
Steel’s latest novel is Beauchamp Hall. Other recent bestsellers include In His Father’s Footsteps, The Good Fight, The Cast, Past Perfect, and Fairytale, all of which have leapt to the top of the New York Times bestseller list, the Wall Street Journal list, and comparable best seller lists around the world.
Steel has written more than 169 books, 145 of which are novels; 18 children’s books, including Pretty Minnie in Hollywood and Pretty Minnie in Paris about her white long-hair teacup Chihuahua; four works of nonfiction, including His Bright Light: The Story of Nick Traina, A Gift of Hope: Helping the Homeless, and Pure Joy: The Dogs We Love; a book of poetry; and she has written the lyrics for a music album.
She also founded and runs two foundations, one named in honor of her late son, The Nick Traina Foundation, which finances organizations involved in mental illness, child abuse, and suicide prevention. The second foundation was established to assist the homeless. In 2002 Steel was decorated by the French government as an “Officier” of the distinguished Order of Arts and Letters and in 2014 she was decorated as a Chevalier (Knight) of the Order of the Legion d’Honneur in Paris. She lives in Paris and San Francisco and is the mother of nine children.