Cover image for Ask Alice : a novel
Title:
Ask Alice : a novel
Author:
Taylor, D. J. (David John), 1960-
Edition:
First Pegasus Books edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Pegasus Books, 2010.

©2009
Physical Description:
342 pages ; 24 cm
Summary:
In 1920s London, former actress and society hostess Alice Keach receives a mysterious visitor and unearths a secret long ago buried in rural Kansas.
General Note:
Originally published: 2009
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781605980867
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

1904. A pretty young woman travels apprehensively across the American prairies; on a whim she makes a bold decision, grabbing her future with both hands.A quarter of a century later, in the brightly colored world of London high life, Alice Keach is queen among society hostesses. Her face stares from every gossip column. Behind her lie a marriage to a wealthy landowner and a career as a celebrated actress. But Alice has a secret, whose roots run five thousand miles away to that Kansas train ride, and a chain of connection with the potential to blow her comfortable existence apart. Ranging from the Dakota Badlands to the drawing rooms of Mayfair and the casting couches of the Edwardian theater, Ask Alice is a remarkable novel that confirms D. J. Taylor as a writer of the highest intellect, vision, and imagination.


Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Taylor (Kept) traverses turn-of-the-20th-century Kansas and the sparkling social circles of Jazz Age London in this swirl of provocative prose and cleverly conceived characters. The novel is told from perspectives ranging from a young boy growing up with his quirky, inventor uncle in the English countryside to an aspiring socialite living life from party to party. The stories may appear disparate, but they are, of course, linked, and Taylor twists and tweaks the plots into an absorbing story of money and ballroom mingling centered on Alice Keach, a pensive and secretive woman who has climbed from modest beginnings in Kansas to the pinnacle of social power in London. Though she's at the height of her influence in English society, a dark secret she thought she'd left behind in America comes back to haunt her. As Alice's life begins to unravel and the stories begin to connect, the narrative takes on the urgency of a finely crafted mystery. The novel is absorbing, wonderfully atmospheric, and loaded with intrigue; it's a wonder Taylor isn't better known. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved