Booklist Reviews 2018 September #1
*Starred Review* For most of her adult life, Frances Jellico has colored within the lines while her lackluster life was made hollower by a complete lack of companionship. When she arrives on assignment to study the architecture at Lyntons, a decaying estate in the English countryside, she discovers an unexpected bonus, friendship with a young, hedonistic couple, Peter Robertson and Cara Calace. Peter has been assigned to inventory the valuables on site, while the tempestuous Cara keeps him company. Over the heady summer of 1969, the three form an increasingly volatile trio as they are sucked into a complicated vortex defined by each character's complicated past. Fuller (Swimming Lessons?, 2017) is a master of propulsive action, making the ground spin as each unreliable narrator takes center stage. Every measured sentence ("‘I used to be a big woman,' voluptuous Frances once said. ‘Now my flesh has melted away but the skin remains and I lie in a puddle of myself.'") builds on itself with the crumbling estate providing the saturated backdrop for this ultimately macabre tale. A distracting plot element or two notwithstanding, Fuller's tale offers a gripping and unsettling look at the ugly side of extreme need and the desperate measures taken in the name of love. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.
LJ Reviews 2018 October #2
In summer 1969, bookish Frances Jellico is hired by an American named Mr. Liebermann, the new owner of Lyntons, an abandoned English country estate. Her job is to evaluate the neglected grounds for restoration. When Frances arrives, she is surprised to find another couple settled in the mansion rooms below hers. Antiques expert Peter, also hired by Liebermann to report on needed repairs, and his girlfriend, Cara, a flighty, unstable woman, who tells Frances elaborate lies about her background. Frances finds the habits of this hedonistic couple troubling, so different from her own sheltered life in London, but when she confides in the local vicar, he warns her not to get involved. However, as the hot summer unfolds, Frances revels in her new freedom and is drawn in by reckless Cara and particularly Peter, who raids the wine cellar, sells off the Lynton family heirlooms, and pockets most of the money to pay alimony to his wife. Partly narrated by Frances 20 years later from her death bed, this story spirals and twists to a shocking conclusion.
PW Reviews 2018 August #2
Fuller's brooding latest (after