Anna is content with her well-ordered life in San Francisco. But her world is turned upside down when her beloved grandfather, Max, reveals a startling secret: Anna is part of an aristocratic family who lost everything during World War II. What’s more, Max was forced to leave behind a precious item over seventy years ago in their estate in old Prussia. It’s now his ardent wish that Anna retrieve it.
Anna burns with questions as she heads for Germany: What memento could be so important to her grandfather? And why did he keep their history hidden? As she searches for answers, she finds herself drawn to Wil, a man who may hold the key to unlock the mystery. Together they discover that her family’s secrets are linked with an abandoned apartment in Paris, and these secrets go deeper than she ever imagined.
Alternating between 1930s Europe and the present, The House by the Lake illuminates the destiny of a family caught in the tumult of history.
Anna’s grandfather asks her to go to Germany and retrieve something from his childhood home. She has a very cool reception from the town. Come to find out, her grandfather may not be the person she thought.
This story kept me reading late into the night and thinking about it during the day at work!!! GASP!! I could visualize the house in Germany and I so wanted to be there. And to know the story is loosely based on a real house made it all the more intriguing.
The characters kept me coming back for more. I loved Anna from the start. When she met Wil….that just took me over the edge. I could just picture them exploring the house working together to overcome the obstacles ahead.
The ending is a little too tidy for me. Anna needs to struggle a little more to find out what happened to her grandfather during WWWII. Instead she finds out in one visit with someone. It would have added a lot to the tale if she had more of an adventure to figure out the mystery. But…..this is just a minor observation and completely my opinion.
I loved, loved, loved this book. The mystery, the house, the setting, the characters all meld together to make a tale I could not stop thinking about.