Lady Jayne Disappears- 5 Star Book Review

Lady Jayne Disappears- 5 Star Book Review

LadyJayneDisappearsLady Jayne Disappears
Joanna Davidson Politano

“No one understood her love of reading, but to Lady Jayne, fiction was far better than real life—it always had to make sense, and real life seldom did.” – Nathaniel Droll, Lady Jayne Disappears
Book Blurb:
Lynhurst Manor is a house built on secrets . . . and the arrival of Aurelie Harcourt might reveal them all.
When Aurelie Harcourt’s father dies suddenly, he leaves her just two things: his famous pen name, Nathaniel Droll, and his wealthy family–who want very little to do with her.
As Aurelie struggles to find a home with her father’s family and learn the rules of society, she relishes in his parting gift–the beginning of his last story. The story she always wanted to hear, about her mother’s mysterious disappearance from the home where she now lives. To complete the novel, she’ll have to extract clues from relatives–and one enigmatic houseguest–who often seem reluctant to give them up.

My Thoughts:
When I read the prologue, I was very confused, but I want to tell readers, Hang on, if you find yourself in the same predicament. By the beginning of chapter 2, you will make sense of the direction of the story. Most of Lady Jayne Disappears is a flashback, told as if in the present. It took me a bit to figure that out. Later in the story, you come back to where you started and then move forward from there for the remainder of the book.

Lady Jayne Disappears is all about puzzles and unraveling the fairytale world Aurelie’s father created with his stories. Aurelie Harcourt grew up in debtor’s prison and her father tells her stories that she then pens in notebooks and they mail to the Marsh House Publishing company. These stories are published as the books of Nathaniel Droll.

“It isn’t the writing that’s so fascinating, when it comes to Nathaniel Droll. It’s the mystery of the man himself. He’s only famous because no one knows who he really is.”
But when Aurelie’s father suddenly dies, Aurelie finds herself displaced from the only home she’s ever known into the fairytale world of her father’s stories, Lynhurst Manor, or so she thought.

“This is what Papa had pictured as he wrote. Suddenly I could not imagine tearing myself away from this place. Papa had spoke of Lynhurst Manor so much that it had settled into the dear parts of my memories as if it were my own childhood home”

On arrival she finds herself very much unwanted and surrounded by a confusing world of social games, secrets, and out-right lies. She longs to fit in with her family, but finds she cannot mold herself to their image.

“My dear Aurelie, if you fit into this world, this very broken, selfish place, it would be you who was the wrong size.”

When Aurelie determines to finish her father’s novel, she assumes his identity as Nathaniel Droll and writing her family members into the story as unflattering characters. As the new installments are released, the household explodes in an uproar as they attempt to uncover the secret identity of Nathaniel Droll. All the while, Aurelie tries to put together the puzzle pieces and clues left by her father to determine the cause of his death and her mother’s disappearance.

“Every now and then when Lady Jayne found the answers to her most pressing questions, she earnestly wished to unlearn them immediately. -Nathaniel Droll, Lady Jayne Disappears”

But not all is as it seems, and Aurelie unravels the fairytale only to have it crash around her, uncovering truths she never expected. Hero’s and Heroine’s become villains and villains become friends.

“You were right, you know. Books are not always an escape. Sometimes they untangle real life marvelously well.”

But God has a purpose in bringing her to this place. Could her stories bring healing to this damaged and dysfunctional family?

“What will be fixed must first be broken.”

As secrets unfold and the story draws to a close, can the broken puzzle of her family be mended? Can she accept the truths as they are revealed? Will happened to Lady Jayne? Why did she leave her child behind? Who are the real imposters? Who are the hero’s? Who are the villains? Can Lady Jayne be united with her true love? Will she disappear once more, relegated to the pages of a novel?

“Juliette nibbled a strawberry and smiled. “You’re intrigued, aren’t you? It’s caught your interest. Admit it.”


JoannaJoanna Davidson Politano freelances for a small nonfiction publisher but spends much of her time spinning tales that capture the colorful, exquisite details in ordinary lives. Her debut novel, Lady Jayne Disappears, releases October 3 from Revell. She is always on the hunt for random acts of kindness, people willing to share their deepest secrets with a stranger, and hidden stashes of sweets. She lives with her husband and their two babies in a house in the woods and shares stories that move her at

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