The Secret Rooms
The Secret Rooms by Catherine Bailey.
Paperback: 512 pages
Publisher: Penguin Books (December 31, 2013)
While researching a book on WWI, historian Bailey stumbled on a crackerjack real-life mystery revolving around the life and times of John Henry Montagu Manners, the ninth Duke of Rutland. A meticulous curator who organized his illustrious family’s documents and correspondence, he died in the archives suite of Belvoir Castle in 1940, refusing medical treatment until he completely expunged all records pertaining to three distinct yet interrelated periods in his life. As Bailey painstakingly unearths secret after secret in order to deduce what really happened between the years 1894 to 1915, the ghosts of scandals past surface in full force. Populated with a bevy of real-life aristos who played by their own twisted and privileged set of rules, a searing portrait of family intrigue, dysfunction, and hubris—à la Downton Abbey—emerges. --Margaret Flanagan
This was a pretty good read. It's true life "history" with mystery involved. It was a little long in the tooth when it came to describing parts of the war that the Duke was in .. although through letter and such everything told was in fact truth... just a bit of it was boring to this old woman. That being said, the bulk of this book held my interest and I find my interest in history rises as I grow older.
Although this is the story of one man, the 9th Duke of Rutland, there is always the background (other people and places) that remind you that it is not the present that's being talked about.
Yup... give me a castle and I will probably want to read the story!