“Chateau of Secrets” tells two related stories, one that is current and one that took place in France during World War 2. Through alternating chapters the reader learns the historic story of Gisèle Duchant and the risks she took to hide French resistance fighters as well as saving numerous others after the German army moved into the family chateau during the German occupation of France. The contemporary story follows Gisèle’s granddaughter Chloe Sauver as she travels to France to answer questions for a documentary featuring the family history.

“Chateau of Secrets” is a fascinating novel that held my attention until the very end. It was easy to follow each story thread and I enjoyed reading what happened to Gisèle at the same time Chloe learned more about her. The historical setting and details were excellent. I almost felt as though I was there. The dramatic tension was perfect and surprises were revealed at just the right moments. Chloe’s love interests added extra depth to the narrative but in my opinion Gisèle was the star of this book.

A special story, “Chateau of Secrets” is a book I would recommend to all lovers of historical fiction.

This book was provided for review by Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.


Chateau Of SecretsA courageous young noblewoman risks her life to hide French resistance fighters; seventy years later, her granddaughter visits the family’s abandoned chateau and uncovers shocking secrets from the past.

Gisèle Duchant guards a secret that could cost her life. Tunnels snake through the hill under her family’s medieval chateau in Normandy. Now, with Hitler’s army bearing down, her brother and several friends are hiding in the tunnels, resisting the German occupation of France.

But when German soldiers take over the family’s château, Gisèle is forced to host them as well—while harboring the resistance fighters right below their feet. Taking in a Jewish friend’s baby, she convinces the Nazis that it is her child, ultimately risking everything for the future of the child. When the German officers begin to suspect her deception, an unlikely hero rescues both her and the child.

A present day story weaves through the past one as Chloe Sauver, Gisèle’s granddaughter, arrives in Normandy. After calling off her engagement with a political candidate, Chloe pays a visit to the chateau to escape publicity and work with a documentary filmmaker, Riley, who has uncovered a fascinating story about Jews serving in Hitler’s army. Riley wants to research Chloe’s family history and the lives that were saved in the tunnels under their house in Normandy. Chloe is floored—her family isn’t Jewish, for one thing, and she doesn’t know anything about tunnels or the history of the house. But as she begins to explore the dark and winding passageways beneath the chateau, nothing can prepare her for the shock of what she and Riley discover…

With emotion and intrigue, Melanie Dobson brings World War II France to life in this beautiful novel about war, family, sacrifice, and the secrets of the past.


MelanieDobsonMelanie Dobson is the award-winning author of thirteen historical romance, suspense, and contemporary novels. Two of her novels won Carol Awards in 2011, and Love Finds You in Liberty, Indiana won Best Novel of Indiana in 2010. Melanie lives with her husband Jon and two daughters near Portland, Oregon. Visit her online at