Article published on December 16, 2014.
Lulu Taylor read English Literature at Oxford and after university, worked in publishing for several years before becoming a novelist. In her blog bio she writes “Sex, love, beauty and money have always entranced us, and one way or another are the basis for just about every story ever written. It’s all about entertaining and amusing the reader, and enjoying being inside my characters’ glamorous, rarefied existence. “
The Snow Angel is her sixth novel and it promises all of the entrancing features that have characterized her novels to date. Cressida Felbridge is living the high life as a debutante in 1960s London society when she is courted by a friend of her brother’s and set to marry. Wishing only the best for his daughter, her father decrees that she must have her portrait painted to mark the occasion. But as soon as she meets the painter Ralph Few, Cressie knows her life will never be the same again. Soon, she is deeply in love with Ralph, but there is one problem: Ralph is still married to Catherine. As Cressie is drawn into a strange, triangular relationship, Catherine’s behaviour becomes increasingly erratic and Ralph and Cressie escape to Cressie’s family home in Cumbria. But Catherine will not give up Ralph that easily .
In the present day, Emily Conway has everything she could wish for: a huge house in West London, two beautiful children and a successful husband, Will. But as Emily and Will drive to a party, Will reveals that he has been betrayed by his business partner. Steering the car off the road at high speed, their perfect life is abruptly ended. When she wakes from her injuries, Emily is told of a mysterious legacy: a house in Cumbria on the edge of an estate, left to her by a woman she has never met. Could this house provide the chance to start anew, or does it hold secrets that she must uncover before it can be at peace?
If Cressie and Ralph sound a tad too Downton for your taste, heed the words of the Heat critic who said that “a racy novel about the life and loves of people who spend more in a weekend than you earn in a year is the best way to see you through the depths of winter’s most depressing month.” Lulu Taylor has it sussed.
The Snow Angel is published by Pan Macmillan.