Book Review: The London Restoration

29 Sep

The secrets that might save a nation could shatter a marriage.

Madly in love, Diana Foyle and Brent Somerville married in London as the bombs of World War II dropped on their beloved city. Without time for a honeymoon, the couple spent the next four years apart. Diana, an architectural historian, took a top-secret intelligence post at Bletchley Park. Brent, a professor of theology at King’s College, believed his wife was working for the Foreign Office as a translator when he was injured in an attack on the European front.

Now that the war is over, the Somervilles’ long-anticipated reunion is strained by everything they cannot speak of. Diana’s extensive knowledge of London’s churches could help bring down a Russian agent named Eternity. She’s eager to help MI6 thwart Communist efforts to start a new war, but because of the Official Secrets Act, Diana can’t tell Brent the truth about her work.

Determined to save their marriage and rebuild the city they call home, Diana and Brent’s love is put to the ultimate test as they navigate the rubble of war and the ruins of broken trust.

Rachel McMillan is the author of the Herringford and Watts mysteries, the Three Quarter Time series of contemporary romances set in opulent Vienna, and the Van Buren and DeLuca mysteries praised for bringing an authentic 1930’s Boston world to life while normalizing the fictional conversation surrounding mental illness. She is also the author of Dream, Plan and Go: A Romantic’s Guide to Independent Travel and A Very Merry Holiday Movie Guide, which explores her love of made-for-TV Christmas movies. Her upcoming historical romances The London Restoration and The Mozart Code take readers deep into an atmospheric look of post-war London, Vienna and Prague. Rachel lives in Toronto, Canada.


My Impressions:

Bravo! That’s the first word that came to mind as I turned the final page of The London Restoration by Rachel McMillan. This post-WWII novel is a complexly written novel that brings to life a London and its people that have suffered greatly. There are so many things to love about this book — great characters, interesting historical details, and a plot that keeps the pages turning. If you are a fan of this era, The London Restoration is a must-read.

The London Restoration features married couple Diana and Brent Somerville. Their new marriage was interrupted by the war, and they are having to navigate a relationship impacted by their wartime experiences. Brent was a stretcher bearer and carries both physical and emotional scars from his time at the front. Diana’s secret wartime activities add another layer of distance between the two. This is a married love story — one that faces many obstacles, but is determined to succeed. The love of 1 Corinthians 13 is lived out in their lives. While for most Londoners the war is over and restoration of families, lives, and buildings is ongoing, a new kind of conflict — a Cold War — is just ramping up. There is mystery and suspense galore. McMillan’s love for music, churches, and the city of London shines through the pages of the novel. You will feel like you are walking the streets and viewing the Wren churches along with Diana and Brent. Simon, one of the secondary characters in the book is a fascinating addition. Readers will have the good fortune of going along with his new adventures, while seeing how Brent and Diana fare in the upcoming sequel, The Mozart Code.

Again, bravo for a beautifully written novel. It is very highly recommended.

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(Thanks to Thomas Nelson for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)



%d bloggers like this: