Authorstand Story of the Week:
The Cedars is an eloquent tale of a darkness that haunts the propriety of a quiet Victorian-era village. Author Valerie Byron captures the manners of the early 20th century while hinting at a deeper current of unrest beneath the veneer of proper society.
Told through the musings of a hometown lawyer, the story is revealed in journal-like notes of what the lawyer can recall of his afflicted client. We meet the solicitor, Victor Slater, in the countryside on a bright day "borrowed from the coming summer," but the reader is suddenly thrown into a mental hospital, where even the sunlight has been locked out and the chairs and tables locked down.
Through the restless writings of Slater, Byron strikes a pleasing balance between the innocence and goodness of the lawyer and his town and the foreboding of a sinister presence.
The proper British tone and formality is maintained throughout the story and thoroughly transports the reader to a time of tweed and horseback, letters and secrets.
We're led through the minds of the town doctor, lawyer and landowner all the while gathering pieces of the puzzle that forms this intriguing plot, though whether it's gossip or fact is unclear.
The consistency and strength of Byron's style draw the reader on to each chapter, in what could otherwise have been rather ordinary settings and characters. Some writers rely on shock value to hold interest, but it's the delicacy of Byron's details that will keep readers returning to her more complex stories.
Was she the cougar or the prey?
"Ms. Byron has done a masterful job of blending romance, sensitivity and deep emotions. She makes the reader fall in love with the man, whose charming personality and good qualities draw people towards him. The credit goes totally to the author for telling this story in the most beautiful natural way, thereby ensuring that situations and the characters are real. With right initiative and positive attitude, she finally found her real love and lived happily. The author inspires us that life could be started at any point of age and to live life to its fullest." - Anita Prasad, BookRix Reader
The year was 1945 - and World War II was raging in England. My mother, a shy young woman, had just gone through a bitter divorce, and was left with two young children. A friend persuaded her to take a trip to London for the weekend and although it was with reluctance that she accepted the invitation, little did she know that she would meet a man on the train who would change her life forever.