I really enjoy historical fiction – perhaps it is because I was a history major and a history teacher – so I jumped at the chance to review Lady of a Thousand Treasures by Sandra Byrd from Tyndale Fiction. The novel is centered around Eleanor Sheffield, an evaluator of antiquities, and her attempt to advance her family business and make an important decision regarding a "thousand treasures." We also meet Harry, Lord Lydney, and many other people important to Eleanor's story.
"A threading of voices spooled throughout the expansive chamber wherein we waited..."
The novel opens in 1866 in Oxfordshire, England, and we quickly learn that Eleanor is the temporary trustee of the Late Lord Lydney's collection of art, armor, jewelry, silver, and other antiquities. She must decide whether the treasures stay at the house – Watchfield – with Lord Lydney's surviving son (Harry) or if they should be donated to the new South Kesington Museum. Both choices provide Eleanor with advantages and disadvantages. So what will she choose? It is a difficult decision for Eleanor. What would you choose?
The plot, while surrounding missing antiquities, fake urns and coins, is also a love story between a middle class lady and a new Lord. Throw in an ailing uncle, new servants, Italians fleeing war, and money issues and you will find you cannot put down Lady of a Thousand Treasures because you want to see what happens next. There are so many wonderful small and big moments in the story that made me keep reading well past my bedtime.
I love that we get to know all the characters through their conversations with Eleanor and her thoughts about the characters and their actions. Books where we really get to know the characters are so great to read.
I recommend this book to those interested in historical fiction – especially of the Victorian Era as Lady of a Thousand Treasures is part of the Victorian Ladies Series Collection. I found the book to be a quick, good read.
Learn more about the author – Sandra Byrd – by visiting the following sites: