In 1939 Paris, Eliane can not idly stand by while the Germans remove precious artworks from the Louvre, its museums, and confiscate private collections from their Jewish owners across the country. She finds herself in a unique position to spy on the Germans and work against their efforts They think her an ignorant "fraulein" who doesn't speak German, and she plans to keep it that way.
Present day, Remy is dealing with the unimaginable grief of losing both her husband and her young daughter. She escapes to a home she has inherited along the French Riviera to shoot photos for her latest look book of vintage fashion and to try to piece her life back together.
The Riviera House was one of those stories that stayed with me so much so that I was thinking about the characters even when I wasn't reading the book. It made me really think about those people responsible for saving our world's artistic treasures and preserving those masterpieces for the generations to follow. The author does a magnificent job of detailing the locations, both in Paris and of course the Riviera House that you feel utterly transported to both the brutal winter of the German occupation of France to the sun drenched beaches near the Riviera House. The characters come to life as well, as you are inspired by Eliane's bravery as she defies the German officers and you feel Remy's deepest grief over the loss of her daughter.
This book was so well researched that I wanted to delve further into all the historical facts after reading it. The author's blog has many photos, including a photo of the house that was the inspiration for The Riviera House and further details regarding her research process. Here is a link to her blog: https://www.natashalester.com.au/blog
I also loved the nod to vintage fashion through Remy's business and the tribute to the wonderful fashion photographers as well. The Riviera House definitely made me a fan of Natasha Lester and her work. I look forward to reading many more of her books.
I received this book courtesy of the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.