Book Club: The Secret of the Nightingale Palace

The Secret of the Nightingale Palace
by Dana Sachs

Anna is a 30-something woman who has recently lost her husband to leukemia. Some time has passed since her husband’s death, and it’s time for Anna to get back on her feet, but she resists moving on. Out of the blue, Anna’s estranged grandmother Goldie telephones and orders her to come to New York at once. Goldie Rosenthal is overly opinionated, eccentric and flat-out nasty, but she’s family, and before we know it, Anna is sitting at Jojo on the Upper East Side and agreeing to drive Goldie across the country in a Rolls Royce to deliver an ancient piece of art to a long lost friend in San Francisco. 

Goldie is not entirely honest with Anna about her true motives for the trip though. She has long-kept a secret about her life in San Francisco in the early 1940s and though hesitant to reveal it, she knows she must in order to help Anna move on and discover happiness and love. 

Told alternately from Goldie’s perspective in the 1940s and Anna’s perspective now, Dana Sachs has created an unforgettable duo whose stories teach us about the enduring power of love and family.