The Golden Hour
In bookstores now
The instant New York Times bestseller brings Second World War-era Nassau to incandescent life in this brilliantly original epic of espionage and human courage inside the court of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
A Book-of-the-Month Club selection for June
An Amazon Editor’s Pick for July
A “Best of Summer” pick from PopSugar, Amazon, Refinery29, Bookish, Southern Living, Bloomberg, and more
ABOUT THE GOLDEN HOUR
The Bahamas, 1941: Newly-widowed Lulu Randolph arrives in Nassau to investigate the new Governor and his wife for a New York society magazine. After all, American readers have an insatiable appetite for news of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, that infamous couple posted to this colonial backwater during World War II after their marriage nearly brought the British monarchy to its knees. What more compelling setting for a magazine feature than a wartime Caribbean paradise, a playground for kingpins of ill-gotten empires?
Or so Lulu imagines. But as she infiltrates the Duke and Duchess’s social circle, and the powerful cabal that controls the islands’ political and financial affairs, she uncovers evidence that beneath the glister of Wallis and Edward’s marriage lies a complex—and even treasonous—reality. In fact, Windsor-era Nassau roils with spies, financial swindles, and racial tension, and in the middle stands Benedict Thorpe: a scientist of magnetic charm and murky national loyalties. Inevitably, the willful and wounded Lulu falls in love.
Then Nassau’s wealthiest man is murdered in one of the most notorious cases of the century, and the resulting cover-up reeks of royal privilege. Benedict disappears without a trace, and Lulu embarks on a journey to London to unpick his complicated family history: a fateful love affair, a wartime tragedy, and a German mother, the baroness Elfriede von Kleist, from whom all joy is stolen.
Thread by thread, the stories of Lulu and Elfriede weave together in this remarkable tour de force of espionage, sacrifice, human love, and courage, set against a shocking true crime… and the rise and fall of a legendary royal couple.
Original and fascinating...A fresh take on the WWII love story, with a narrator who practically demands Myrna Loy come back to life to play her in the movie."
— Kirkus (starred review)
The stories of two remarkable women a generation apart are cleverly intertwined in Williams’s sweeping family saga...Williams illuminates the story with exotic locales and bygone ambience, and seduces with the irresistible Windsors. Readers will appreciate the wartime espionage that keeps the suspense high."
— Publishers Weekly
With her trademark skill, the author adeptly draws the threads of the two story lines together, culminating in a surprising, emotionally satisfying conclusion. Williams’ latest is moving, well-researched, and compulsively readable to the very last page."
Bestselling author Beatriz Williams skillfully sets a story of love and sacrifice against the backdrop of war in her fascinating new novel… Readers will be spellbound by Williams’ elegant prose, fascinating characters and unforgettable settings while fully engrossed by the novel’s dual plots."