The Lions of Fifth Avenue (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Laura Lyons, wife of the superintendent of the New York Public Library, is not content with her role as wife and mother of two children. She longs to attend Columbia Journalism School, get a job as a reporter and help support her family. However the roles and expectations for a woman in 1913 are very rigid and achieving her dreams may break Laura. Eighty years later, Laura's granddaughter Sadie Donovan, is an assistant curator at the NYPL, who comes under suspicion when valuable books begin to go missing from the library's famous Berg collection. I was very excited to hear that Fiona Davis was writing about one of my favorite places in the world the New York Public Library and she did not disappoint me. As Sadie walked down the stately marble hallways or when Laura gazed up at the magnificent ceiling in the Rose Reading Room, I felt I was right beside them. Not only did I learn more about the library but also about the oppressive treatment of women and the poor in the early 1900's. In the genre of historical fiction, Fiona Davis is one of the best authors I've read. I not only recommend this book but also a visit to what I consider a slice of heaven on Earth, the New York Public Library.

— Lisa


A Good Morning America Book Club Pick and a New York Times bestseller

"A page-turner for booklovers everywhere . . . A story of family ties, their lost dreams, and the redemption that comes from discovering truth."--Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of The Shoemaker's Wife

In New York Times bestselling author Fiona Davis's latest historical novel, a series of book thefts roils the iconic New York Public Library, leaving two generations of strong-willed women to pick up the pieces.

It's 1913, and on the surface, Laura Lyons couldn't ask for more out of life--her husband is the superintendent of the New York Public Library, allowing their family to live in an apartment within the grand building, and they are blessed with two children. But headstrong, passionate Laura wants more, and when she takes a leap of faith and applies to the Columbia Journalism School, her world is cracked wide open. As her studies take her all over the city, she is drawn to Greenwich Village's new bohemia, where she discovers the Heterodoxy Club--a radical, all-female group in which women are encouraged to loudly share their opinions on suffrage, birth control, and women's rights. Soon, Laura finds herself questioning her traditional role as wife and mother. And when valuable books are stolen back at the library, threatening the home and institution she loves, she's forced to confront her shifting priorities head on . . . and may just lose everything in the process.

Eighty years later, in 1993, Sadie Donovan struggles with the legacy of her grandmother, the famous essayist Laura Lyons, especially after she's wrangled her dream job as a curator at the New York Public Library. But the job quickly becomes a nightmare when rare manuscripts, notes, and books for the exhibit Sadie's running begin disappearing from the library's famous Berg Collection. Determined to save both the exhibit and her career, the typically risk-averse Sadie teams up with a private security expert to uncover the culprit. However, things unexpectedly become personal when the investigation leads Sadie to some unwelcome truths about her own family heritage--truths that shed new light on the biggest tragedy in the library's history.

About the Author

Fiona Davis is the New York Times bestselling author of five novels, including The Dollhouse, The Address, and The Lions of Fifth Avenue. She lives in New York City and is a graduate of the College of William & Mary in Virginia and the Columbia Journalism School.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781524744632
ISBN-10: 1524744638
Publisher: Dutton Books
Publication Date: May 25th, 2021
Pages: 384
Language: English