Chateau Of Secrets was my first novel by Melanie Dobson and it was excellent! I enjoyed every single chapter because each page revealed another aspect of who the heroines were what they would fight for. Gisele was determined to maintain order in her family’s château during the occupation during World War II even after the Nazis occupied it. Her granddaughter, Chloe, returned to the scene decades later to nurse a broken heart and give an interview for a documentary about the war. The women were such engaging people, that this was a charming read. Dobson was masterful at succinctly describing historical details about the war in a way that related to the story. She gave enough background for everything to make sense without interrupting the flow of the novel. Several characters appeared briefly to help give an overview of French resistance, which also helped make the story realistic. Gisele’s youth at the beginning of the book, where she refused to believe that Germans would actually conquer Paris or remain in her town, aptly represented the naive hope shared by her countrymen. I loved that her story unfolded over several years because she was allowed to grow into a strong and determined young woman who courageously defied the Germans in her home by taking believable risks. Julia was a thoughtful character whose main purpose was to pull together the secrets of the Chateau while falling for the main filming a documentary on heroes of WWII.
The stories of both women moved along so well that I gobbled this up in one day! This was such a lovely tribute to the resistance fighters of France that it quickly became one of my favorite war novels so far!