Author: Kristy Woodson Harvey
Publication Date: March 22, 2022
Publisher: Gallery Books
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction
Bottom Line: Strong Woman led story that doesn't disappoint
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Grab
Summary: Four women. One family heirloom. A secret connection that will change their lives—and history as they know it. Present Day: Julia Baxter’s wedding veil, bequeathed to her great-grandmother by a mysterious woman on a train in the 1930s, has passed through generations of her family as a symbol of a happy marriage. But on the morning of her wedding day, something tells her that even the veil’s good luck isn’t enough to make her marriage last forever. Overwhelmed and panicked, she escapes to the Virgin Islands to clear her head. Meanwhile, her grandmother Babs is also feeling shaken. Still grieving the death of her beloved husband, she decides to move out of the house they once shared and into a retirement community. Though she hopes it’s a new beginning, she does not expect to run into an old flame, dredging up the same complicated emotions she felt a lifetime ago. 1914: Socialite Edith Vanderbilt is struggling to manage the luxurious Biltmore Estate after the untimely death of her cherished husband. With 250 rooms to oversee and an entire village dependent on her family to stay afloat, Edith is determined to uphold the Vanderbilt legacy—and prepare her free-spirited daughter Cornelia to inherit it—in spite of her family’s deteriorating financial situation. But Cornelia has dreams of her own. Asheville, North Carolina has always been her safe haven away from the prying eyes of the press, but as she explores more of the rapidly changing world around her, she’s torn between upholding tradition and pursuing the exciting future that lies beyond Biltmore’s gilded gates. In the vein of Therese Anne Fowler’s A Well-Behaved Woman and Jennifer Robson’s The Gown, The Wedding Veil brings to vivid life a group of remarkable women forging their own paths—and explores the mystery of a national heirloom lost to time. ~amazon.com
Review: I am a huge fan of Kristy Woodson Harvey's Peachtree Series and was so excited when she announced The Wedding Veil because not only does it have a contemporary storyline but this time she intersects it with a historical one. One thing that Ms. Harvey always does so well is generational, strong female relationships. This time it's the one between Julia & her grandmother, Babs. Babs has always been the force behind Julia to follow her dreams; no matter what that entails. So when some stuff goes down at her Bridal Brunch, it's Babs that tells her to listen to herself. For so long, Julia ran away when things got hard and she always ran back to Hayes, her fiancé. She's never known herself without him.
Babs herself is ready to make some changes to her life. To move out of the house she shared with her husband, Reid before he passed. Except her daughters, Meredith and Alice are vehemently against it so she takes the situation into her own hands She knows it's the right thing to do for herself. What she doesn't expect is to find someone from her past.
The veil is how we get to go back to the 1914 and the Vanderbilt family and the history of it, the family and the Biltmore. Edith was quite the formidable woman and leader after her husband, George died. She helped take George's vision for Asheville and made it come true. Her daughter, Cornelia, is set to follow in her footsteps until something sets her off-course. Of course, her life going off course starts a tradition in Bab's and Julia's.
It's all these strong women, Edith, Cornelia, Babs and Julia that show us how tradition, family, love and dreams are what makes it all worth it.