BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Friday, February 17, 2012

Excerpt From The Legacy of Eden by Nelle Davy

A few weeks ago, I reviewed the novel, The Legacy of Eden, by newcomer Nelle Davy. It's a multi-generational saga of a farm family in Iowa and their trials and tribulations. It is also the debut novel for author Nelle Davy. It's available now in trade from MIRA Books.


Nelle was originally born in St George’s Grenada under the name Janelle (which she always hated and immediately shortened when she went to University). She moved to London when she was nine months old because her grandfather was English and her parents supposedly wanted a better life. She got a scholarship to Sir William Perkins School for girls where she had a wonderful English teacher Mrs. Wells who encouraged her constantly in her love for books. She went to Warwick University to study English with Creative Writing where after swearing she would never marry, she met her future husband. She did a masters in Creative Writing at Trinity College Dublin and then moved back to London in 2007 where she almost immediately began working in publishing. After working at Pan Macmillan she moved to work at a literary agency while also writing and pursuing a career as a novelist on the side.

She is 27 years old and The Legacy of Eden is her first novel. She has finished writing a second novel based on the civil rights movement in Louisiana in 1963. She still lives in London with her husband and still works full time in publishing.

So far, she has not had a meltdown…

For generations, Aurelia was the crowning glory of more than three thousand acres of Iowa farmland and golden cornfields. The estate was a monument to matriarch Lavinia Hathaway's dream to elevate the family name - no matter what relative or stranger she had to destroy in the process. It was a desperation that wrought the downfall of the Hathaways - and the once prosperous farm. 

Now the last inhabitant of the decaying old home has died - alone. None of the surviving members of the Hathaway family want anything to do with the farm, the land, or the memories.

Especially Meredith Pincetti. Now living in New York City, for seventeen years Lavinia's youngest grandchild has tried to forget everything about her family and her past. But with the receipt of a pleading letter, Meredith is again thrust into conflict with the legacy that destroyed her family's once-great name. Back at Aurelia, Meredith must confront the rise and fall of the Hathaway family... and her own part in their mottled history. 

 "Our farm was like the world when people still thought it was flat. And when you left it, it was as if you had simply sailed too far and fallen off the surface into the void."

ISBN: 9780778329558
Published by: MIRA BOOKS
Format: Trade
Length: 400 pages
Release Date: JANUARY 24, 2012

There were times when I think she would have gladly allowed things to degenerate into the spectacle of recrimination and blame that I so desperately hoped to avoid, but she never pushed it. When the time came, and I think we always knew it would, she would have nothing to fear. She was the betrayed, not the betrayer.

And now, here we finally are, because the one time when she expected me to revert to type and walk away I wouldn’t. The irony was not lost on me as I put the phone back on its rest. I know what she thinks—that I’m being deliberately contrary, hurtful, cruel. The rational part of me knows I have no right to blame her for thinking this—haven’t I proved myself to be all these things already? But I am still furious with her, because I so want to be able to do what she is asking and leave the farm to its fate with no regrets, and I can’t. Then I could show that what happened—what I did—was a mistake, it wasn’t me. I can change. I have changed.
To read another excerpt, go here:


  1. This sounds like something I would like.

  2. Based on the book blurb and your comments, this doesn't sound like something that would appeal to me, but I'm glad to hear your take on it. Makes picking out novels so much easier when someone tells you the truth about it. Well done!


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