"All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape."
--Author Christopher Benson



Thursday, July 14, 2011

INCOGNITO by Gregory Murphy

Cover Design
by Judith Lagerman
Berkley Publishing Group
A Division of Penguin Publishing
ISBN-10: 0425241033
ISBN-13: 978-0425241035

Set in New York City in 1911, William Dysart, a lawyer, is representing a client who wants to expand her Long Island property.  He travels to Lloyd Neck, a small village, to present a very generous offer to Miss Sybil Curtis.  He is amazed that she refuses the offer and his client threatens to  seize the small cottage and land through the state. Why does his client what this property so much?

William finds himself sympathizing with Miss Curtis and wants to help her to retain her property if he can.  He is also starting to buckle under the pressure of his father's interference in his life and a wife who is very beautiful on the outside but very shallow on the inside.  Her demands of a bigger home, larger staff and flaunts of their wealth make him question himself and his marriage.

He finds a need to get the truth, the real reason his client's needs to own Miss Curtis's property.  As he  investigates he becomes drawn to Sylvia in a way he cannot explain. As his feelings turn to obsession, parts of his own past are also revealed and he realizes he needs to take control of his life and rid himself of the disguise he has been wearing for years.  Has he been living his whole life Incognito?

I really enjoyed this step back in history.  The author interweaves the lives of the characters together and creates mystery in an almost blissful way. It just flows and flows as we turn each page. There are only two likable characters in this book, all the rest are shallow, domineering, self righteous, conceited or complacent.  It is not hard to root for William and Sybil to succeed, which may be the reason I just liked this book.  From the beginning the biggest question was, is there going to be a "happily ever after"? You will have to read the book to find out.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Berkley Book Group, a division of Penguin Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”