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Moonlight Over Mayfair: The uplifting and charming Sunday Times Bestseller from Anton Du Beke

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The ballroom is very centre stage in the story and the dancers that put on a show that says everything is normal here, while outside the undercurrents of unrest in Europe is never far away. However his girlfriend, Nancy, is horrified at the prospect of leaving her job as a chambermaid and her volunteer charity work with London's poor. As society in London and internationally struggles to come to terms with potential disaster, the other side of London life is revealed.

They also provide the most wonderful monthly subscription to my Mum - a cosy crime novel each month.Meanwhile Frank, Nelly’s younger brother arrives at the Buckingham to take up a new job that will involve him in far more than simply working as a Porter.

Interspersed with some really great uplifting times despite some heart in mouth moments along the way, this was a cracking read that I thoroughly enjoyed. Helene also has her chance of Romance, wooed by a guest, but juggling her clandestine life proves tricky. I particularly enjoyed reading Maynard Charles’ story with his arch enemy Abner Grant and Maynard’s partner Aubrey.

I couldn’t wait to see what new events were happening in the hotel and what new dances were being introduced to England. I wish to thank NetGalley and the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly. I can't wait to read another book with all the same characters in it and get to know more new characters and old characters all over again and more stories in the past. This is a smoothly plotted book with much drama and crisis, a lot of which is centred on the choices made by various characters. As one would expect, the beautiful ballroom features prominently in the book and the sections involving dance are well realised and described.

Packed with characters who are brilliantly drawn, emotional drama that touches the heart and magic that will effortlessly transport readers to the 1930s, Moonlight Over Mayfair is an outstanding read from dance supremo, Anton du Beke. If you haven't already read the first in series, I would recommend you do that before starting this one - character development and backstory and all that! Raymond is away, exploring the possibilities of America and the new dance crazes which will transform his whole view of dancing. I’ll be booking my suite again for next year at Buckingham Hotel and I can’t wait to catch up with Raymond De Guise, Nancy and all the other endearing and captivating characters. I appreciate that her dreams are as important as his -- but actually in those days, she wouldn't have thought so.

I absolutely love what is happening to Miss Edgerton as she ropes Nancy into her night-time shenanigans! I enjoyed reading about Raymond de Guise in his first outing and had been looking forward to this follow up, however this second novel felt somewhat rushed and I didn’t feel much for any of the characters this time around. Whilst personally I did not warm to Frank whom I felt brought nothing new to the cast, his story did not dominate the novel which is much more a story of how a magnificent hotel fares through the interwar years and the impact on its fortunes, in addition to the staff and guests who pass through its doors.

Vivienne is the stepdaughter of the hotel’s owner, but has spent her considerable resources and privileged position unwisely on alcohol and worse. Raymond de Guise is the show dancer with a growing reputation for being the most able dancer of his generation. With Hollywood beckoning and a secret romance to contend with, Raymond’s life becomes more complicated as he’s caught up in the danger and intrigue of prewar London. There are a few slips of fact beyond the central story, but they in no way affect the attractions of this very enjoyable novel.I doubt the novel would work as well as it does if read as a stand-alone, with much of the enjoyment coming from seeing how far the characters who came to life in the first novel fare in the second. Anton is not just a talented, suave and debonair dancer and a respected television personality but is also now a very sophisticated, intelligent and creative author.

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