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The Sparkling Cascade of diamonds was designed to adorn the women who married into one of England's most prominent families - a symbol of the wealth and privilege enjoyed by the Firths of Yorkshire. Instead the magnificent necklace would come to burden the women who wore it, becoming for them an emblem of bondage and inherited tragedy.
Pamela Haines's enthralling new saga tells of three generations whose lives and destinies are linked through blood and inheritance of this priceless heirloom. There is Lily Greene, star of the London stage, who in 1898 weds the enigmatic sir Robert Firth, and for whom the diamond waterfall comes to symbolize a state of degradation and humiliation she never imagined possible. There is Lily's daughter, Sylvia, who is married for this fabulous legacy and leads a life of love and torment. And finally, there is Willow Gilmartin, who in the spring of 1945 removes the diamond waterfall from its bed of ivory satin-and at last claims a heritage that has for so long eluded others.
Sweeping from a great Yorkshire estate to the Riviera and across Europe - from the opulence of Edwardian London to the trenches of France in World War I and back to England during one of her most dramatic hours-this panoramic novel interweaves the lives of men who would fight on the battlefields of two world wars and women who would carry forward the traditions that defined them.
- Bloomsbury Publishing, September 2011
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