Park Lane by Frances Osborne


12 Critic Reviews meticulously researched, but that is not enough to create an authentic atmosphere.
-The American Book Center Blog


A Goldsboro Crown Historical Fiction Award Nominee

The bestselling author of The Bolter returns with a delicious novel about two determined women whose lives collide in the halls of a pedigreed London town home.

When eighteen-year-old Grace Campbell arrives in London in 1914, she’s unable to fulfill her family’s ambitions and find a position as an office secretary. Lying to her parents and her brother, Michael, she takes a job as a housemaid at Number 35, Park Lane, where she is quickly caught up in lives of its inhabitants—in particular, those of its privileged son, Edward, and daughter, Beatrice, who is recovering from a failed relationship that would have taken her away from an increasingly stifling life. Desperate to find a new purpose, Bea joins a group of radical suffragettes and strikes up an intriguing romance with an impassioned young lawyer. Unbeknownst to each of the young women, the choices they make amid the rapidly changing world of WWI will connect their chances at future happiness in dramatic and inevitable ways.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About Frances Osborne

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Frances Osborne was born in London and studied philosophy and modern languages at Oxford University. She is the author of Lilla's Feast and The Bolter. Her articles have appeared in The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Independent, the Daily Mail, and Vogue. She lives in London with her husband, George Osborne, and their two children.
Published June 12, 2012 by Vintage. 338 pages
Genres: History, War, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Park Lane
All: 12 | Positive: 6 | Negative: 6


Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on Jul 01 2012

Osborne’s efforts are solid, and her book will appeal to both historical fiction buffs and romance enthusiasts alike.

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Reviewed by Clare Clark on Jun 29 2012

Osborne has a pacy style and an assured grasp of period, which make Park Lane a breezy read...

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Below average
Reviewed by Julie Burchill on Jun 07 2012

Night-cold, turnip-big and weighing a ton, I suggest you give this book the swerve and spend the money on pasties instead.

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The Independent

Below average
Reviewed by Emma Hagestadt on Jun 26 2012

The responsibility of marrying fact and fiction, however, seems to have had a dampening effect on her storytelling...

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Reviewed by Pippa Wright on Jun 17 2012 is more that from its lacklustre tell-nothing title to its workmanlike plot progression, it never seems to take off.

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Reviewed by Fran Wood on Jun 24 2012

Chapters alternate between the lives of Beatrice Masters...and Grace Campbell...but the two women have nothing in common. Except, perhaps, ambition.

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London Evening Standard

Below average
Reviewed by Jackie Annesley on May 31 2012

It’s the sort of mum-lit you would expect from a former barrister — measured and workable...The “ee by gum” prose from Grace is intensely grating, but the pace picks up after the first 60 pages

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The American Book Center Blog

Below average
Reviewed by Patty Friedrichs on Jun 08 2012 meticulously researched, but that is not enough to create an authentic atmosphere.

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Richmond Times-Dispatch

Reviewed by Judith Chettle on Aug 05 2012

Osborne has created a thoughtful and evocative tale of class barriers eroding and opportunities expanding.

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Spectator Book Club

Below average
Reviewed by Richard Ryder on Jun 02 2012

Park Lane is defter than a comedy of manners.

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The Booksellers New Zealand blog

Below average
Reviewed by booksellersnz on Sep 24 2012

Park Lane failed to really come together as a page-turner and perhaps that’s why this review has taken a while in formulating itself.

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Culture Street

Reviewed by Sophia Whitfield on Aug 20 2012

It is an interesting insight into the women’s suffrage movement, but the novel really comes into its own once war breaks out.

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Reader Rating for Park Lane

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