High Street

Anna Jacobs, Author
Anna Jacobs, Author St. Martin's Press $24.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-312-14614-6
Hardcover - 691 pages - 978-0-7505-0913-8
Paperback - 471 pages - 978-0-340-62290-2
Hardcover - 471 pages - 978-0-340-92327-6
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In this vividly characterized, densely plotted sequel to Salem Street, Jacobs once more focuses on the Gibson clan, particularly the vital and beautiful Annie and her brother Tom. It's 1845, and Annie is finally making the move from the working-class Rows to a house of her own, taking her family with her. Barmy Charlie, the junk man who married her after her rape, has died, leaving her his business. Through hard work and Tom's help, she is doing well, and now, with the encouragement of a former employer, Annie plans to establish a posh dress-design business. In her personal life, Annie has convinced herself that she wants no man, as local mill owner Frederick Hallam discovers. Even so, he becomes her friend and hides his desire to be more. Old flame Danny O'Connor is also still interested and begins to pursue the reluctant Annie. But someone seems hell-bent on destroying Annie's success, attempting to block her modiste shop and intimating some lack of respectibility, not to mention a few family skeletons. Meanwhile, her friend Dr. Jeremy Lewis is having his own difficulties with his haughty wife, Annabelle, whose behavior leads to scandal, while the doctor and his capable young housekeeper continue to deny their feelings for one another. All the disparate threads are neatly and satisfyingly interwoven in a story where good triumphs over evil and merit over class. (Feb.)
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