Nell and Lady: A Novel

Nell and Lady: A Novel

by Ashley Farley


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781503903005
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 09/18/2018
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 128,565
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Ashley Farley is the bestselling author of the Sweeney Sisters series as well as the stand-alone novels Sweet Tea Tuesdays, Magnolia Nights, Beyond the Garden, and other books about women for women. Her characters are mothers, daughters, sisters, and wives facing real-life situations, and her goal is to keep readers turning pages with stories that resonate long after the last word.

In addition to writing, she is an amateur photographer, an exercise junkie, and a wife and mother. While she has lived in Richmond, Virginia, for more than two decades, part of her heart remains in the salty marshes of the South Carolina Lowcountry where she grew up. Through the eyes of her characters, she captures the moss-draped trees, delectable cuisine, and kindhearted folks with lazy drawls that make the area so unique. For more information on the author and her work, visit

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Nell and Lady: A Novel 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
DebReads More than 1 year ago
This book is about three generations of friendships and the ever evolving relationships between two families. The fact that Nell and Lady were once the best of friends was only possible because, in the beginning, Mavis and Willa were the best of friends. The strong bond of friendship between Mavis and Willa was quite extraordinary and even eternal. What is the greatest gift that one mom can give to another? I believe it is to love the other mom's child as her own. That is what Mavis and Willa did for each other. Such an awesome example of true friendship and sacrificial love! Imagine being able to experience a taste of heaven...with its absolute serenity, an all consuming peace and overwhelming contentment. Imagine being able to have heart to heart conversations with your best friend who now has a heavenly address. I loved reading those touching, heartwarming and emotional. Every person needs a purpose. Waking up from a frightening health crisis, Willa now approached life with a clear purpose and filled with determination. As adults, Nell and Lady were each lost in their own way. Both needed to extend and receive grace and forgiveness to be made whole again. The characters in this lovely story experienced broken hearts and healed hearts, disappointments and true joy, and forgiveness along with second chances. Thanks to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishers for a copy of this book.
StoreyBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Family is more than you know. A gentle story that covers racism, sexual assault, stress, cancer, aging, and regrets. The lives of Nell and Lady are woven together that you don't learn everything at one time, it is told slowly over the whole book and allowed me to really understand and know these characters and what they lives were like growing up and now as adults. Misunderstandings, withholding answers, and perhaps even not wanting to know what happened caused the rift in this family. It takes the wisdom of a child to help right things in this family. I think my favorite character is actually Booker, Nell's son. He seems wise beyond his 17 years. His mom tells him what happened to her as a child and he is able to impart some life altering comments to her about the situation. All true IMHO. Booker is also not the perfect kid - he is very focused on college to the point of anxiety. He has some life lessons learned in the book too. I always enjoy reading Ashley's books for the setting and the realism - no one is perfect, each has their own flaws and they learn from their mistakes. It may take a lot of time, but it does happen!
booklover6460 More than 1 year ago
Oh my! This one had so many issues that were addressed. This book made you stop and take a moment to think about how you respond to certain situations, about your prejudices, about your life and what you've made of yourself. Lots and lots of things to delve into and while the story is about Nell and Lady, it makes you take a good hard look at yourself. This story is heart wrenching and heart warming. You will find pain and joy, anxiety and enjoyment, love and loss throughout the pages. You will definitely be taken on an emotional journey. While Southern charm is am amazing thing, it doesn't always make people feel comfortable. And in the Bellemore grand home in Charleston, SC, you will experience Southern charm but with a little bit of bite to it. You will also experience the precious gift of friendship ... and yet how that friendship falls apart. But is it possible to recapture the bond that initially brought them so much joy? What an emotional tale of family secrets and how those secrets can impact your life! Can a long lost friendship be rekindled? Wonderful book and I encourage you to take the time to get lost in the story of Nell and Lady. Thank you to the author, Ashley Farley, and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.
KerryACroucier More than 1 year ago
This was such a wonderfully solid read. There is so much here to like, and it really was enjoyable. I loved the setting, the characters, the story, and the issues it touched on. The heart of it was family, not only the family you are born with, but the one you make for yourself. The story kept me emotionally engaged; there were both tears and laughs, as I worked my way to the end. Ashley Farley is a new to me author and I really enjoyed the way she wove the characters and story line together. I will definitely be looking to read more of her previous work, as well as add her to my “must read” list. #NellandLady #LakeUnion
penuser More than 1 year ago
Ive seen the title of this book recommended in other book reads and am happy NetGalley gave me the opportunity to read this book. Three generations of women living in Charleston SC, earlier times when African Americans were the help in AMerican homes, each one's lives impacted by earlier decisions of keeping a secret 37 yrs, and the heartbreaking impact left for 37 years. Words unsaid and assumptions carried all that time, Before these issues even began, Willa hires MAyMay,and realizes she is pg. Nonethe less, MayMay and her daughter become like family to Willa and her daughter Lady(who is 4 months apart of Nell) and the circumstances following a motherless Nell, Willa's decisions on Nell's future become her own and her responsibilty to her best freind to make sure Nell continues her education and doesnt do without. This story shows how one can take being rich for granted,and being poor makes one appreciate the little things that arent always available because of income. This story deals with racial conflicts ,that keeps the reader glued to an episode and it had me angry at how ignorant society could be,all because of a person's race. The whole story however isnt glued about race, but incidents due to it, cause a silence within the family that has tore and kept them apart so long. That close bond has always been there, its up to the 3nd generation to bring their family back together how they once were. A grandmother's strong love for her daughters and grandchildren proves she isnt ready to leave this world until her own eyes can see them bonded back together . The reconsilations they encounter take time and yet forgivness and pushing pride aside, love prevails. It takes an amazing storyline for me to not put the book down and this is what happened to me, read this book in one day .
Ourpugs More than 1 year ago
Nell and Lady Nell and Lady grew up together but something happens to Nell that separated them. Nell and her mother lived with Lady and her mother, Willa. Lady has a daughter and Nell has a son. They both play a big roll in the book. A very inspiring story, a little mystery of what happened to Nell that left her not wanting a relationship with basically her family since Willa adopted her after her mother died. I really loved the book. It is about forgiveness, overcoming past and learning to love one another again. I definitely recommend this book. Hard to decide which was my favorite character. I really enjoyed Regan and Booker, the teen age children. They were good friends but did know their parents knew each other from the past. They really had a lot to deal with. I received an complementary copy of the book from NetGalley through the author. I was not required to write an positive review.
lsmoore_43 More than 1 year ago
Thank you to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishers for the honor of reading this book. This was a very heartfelt book. It touched on subjects that are full of pain and missunderstandings. Family is more than just blood. It’s more than just race. It’s that deep down feeling of love. Love that can at times be so painful too. From the racial points to the sexual assault Lady and Nell have so much to get over. Two girls who were best friends from birth until the age of 16. Can they find their way back? Both have a teenage child headed for college. Both divorced and trying to make a life. Both with a mother dying of cancer. Finding your way back to someone is hard at times. Sometimes it takes something awful to make you see what you had and can have again. Ashley Farley is a wonderful author and she weaves this story perfectly. Told by each of the main characters who you will love. Each one tells their story and makes you fall in love with them. It’s a great book. Well developed characters and the time frame was perfect. I loved it. It’s a big 5 stars. One you won’t regret reading. I enjoyed this book and could not put it down.
TheBookBag More than 1 year ago
Once again, Ashley Farley has written a beautiful story that has touched my heart. Her books are always filled with amazing characters, people I would love to know in real life. And she has such a gentle way of writing that I just get swept up in her words. Nell and Lady is a thought-provoking tale of family love and acceptance, even when the world around them isn't so accepting. And then there's the secret that tore this family apart. Can the two 'sisters' make amends and be a family again—their dying mother's wish? I loved this generational story with all of the family history, as people move on with their lives, forever intertwined and connected. This is definitely a story you're going to want to read. I know I want to go back and read it again. I loved it and I highly recommend it!
LGHudson More than 1 year ago
HEARTRENDING! Nell and Lady is a heartrending story spanning thirty years and three generations. Farley’s novel is set in Charleston, SC and involves two families who consciously chose to bind their lives together. The unusual thing is the two families are from different races - one is Lady’s wealthy white family and the other is Nell’s African American family (The Help) that works for them. “The Help” becomes “The Best Friend” & so do their children because they don’t think there is anything wrong with their friendship. One horrible episode changes everything and they become estranged for many years. This is a beautiful story of redemption in the truth, color doesn’t matter and love never fails. I was provided an ARC of this book by Lake Union Publishers. The opinions expressed here are completely my own and without influence. I have also preordered a copy of this book for my own personal library.
angang68 More than 1 year ago
I received a free ARC of this book and am voluntarily writing my honest review. This book drew me in from the first word. This book follows the lives of Willa, Lady, and Nell in the past and the present. A secret in the 1970's tore Lady and Nell apart. Now Willa is dying and she wants Nell back in their lives. This wish causes all 3 women to face the past in order to have a future. Ms. Farley has once again created a story and characters that stay with the reader long after the book has ended. The author's love for Charleston, SC shines through in this story that makes the reader feel like they are there. The characters are flawed but realistic and will have the reader rooting for them to find the strength to rebuild their fractured relationship.
CecileV More than 1 year ago
Nell and Lady is a beautiful story about friendship, family and the consequences of the choices that we make. The girls were best friends, became sisters and then during a party, one started down the road to alcoholism and the other experienced an assault that would take her away from her family. Both girls married, each had a child and many years later would find themselves face-to-face dealing with situations that would force them to face the past. Thank you NetGalley and Ashley Farley for an ARC of Nell and Lady. I loved this book!
lauriesophee More than 1 year ago
"Together, forever. Let nothing or no one ever come between us." This quote is between two young girls who are best friends and sisters- until they weren't. Present day- Willa, her daughter Lady, and Willa's beloved granddaughter Regan live in a large estate in Charleston, South Carolina. They have not seen Nell in years and now that Willa is nearing the end of her life, she longs to reconnect to her long lost adopted daughter and learn what made her run from her family. The secrets and hurt that occurred so many years past have separated this family and time is running out. The angel is Mavis who can help Willa, Lady and Nell reconcile. They must listen to their hearts! A beautiful novel of friendship, family and love!
Holly More than 1 year ago
Nell And Lady is the one story you need to read this September!! This story will have you glued to the book until that last word is read and even then, I'm still thinking about this book! On one side you have Willa and Lady who are white and rich and the other, Mavis and Nell being the black hired help living in one house. You would think that would be recipe for disaster but in this book, it just works for what the story is saying. First you have Nell losing her mother which will make you cry, then you have this incident at Lady's 16th birthday that will make you feel even more for Nell for what she had to endure but at the same time, she should have told Willa and Lady what really happened that forced them to grow apart all those lost years. I have to admit, I thought Lady was a brat until the ending when something horrible happens that will force everyone to be the family that was meant to be! I don't want to give too much away but y'all really need to read this story that will have you smiling at certain parts and downright crying at others but the true meaning of this book is a broken family coming back together at last. Plus, who doesn't love a story set in Charleston, SC!! Thank You to Ashley Farley for this wonderful story that has made me want to go read your other books just to get the feels that this one brings to the table! I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley!
annemariebookaholic More than 1 year ago
This is the first time I have read a book by Ashley Farley and it will not be my last. The story takes place in Charleston, South Carolina where prejudice runs strong. This story is about family secrets and forgiveness. You will laugh and cry...and it will warm your heart. I don't like to ruin a book by giving too much away but I highly recommend....wonderful story
Alisha24C More than 1 year ago
Family isn’t always about blood, but who you make it. In this story by Ashley Farley Nell, the maid’s daughter and Lady, the lady of the house’s daughter grew up together in a mansion in Charleston. Suddenly Nell’s mom dies and Lady’s mother adopts her and treats her just like her own. They played together, ate together, and laughed together until the night of Lady’s 16th birthday. Something happened to Nell that she’s never told anyone, especially Lady. This story takes you through the heartaches and healing needed to bring a family back together again.
Honolulubelle More than 1 year ago
Favorite Quotes: Lady wasn’t dredging up anything. She lived in the past every single day. She was a character in a movie with a worn-out theme— waking up every morning to repeat the same traumatic day over and over again. For your information, Betty, my help is my family, not that it’s any of your business. As for my social status, I have more friends in this town than you have weeds in your garden. And, honey, I’m here to tell you that you have a whole $* pot of weeds growing in your garden. My Review: The clever and thoughtful premise of this book was the pervasive domino effect of a kept secret thirty-one years after the undisclosed traumatic event lead. It started with a silent resentment that quickly festered into a loud and bitter antipathy and resulted in complete avoidance. The secret had effectively poisoned their family and shaped their choices and attitudes as adults. The storylines were believable, heart-squeezing, easy to follow and well paced while the writing was emotive and well detailed. While the story was engaging and well plotted, her characters are always where Ms. Farley’s true artistry shines. This ensemble was realistically drawn, deeply flawed, and so well-fleshed out I felt I knew them. Ashley Farley has a well-honed skill for creating common yet deeply fractured characters that greatly annoy me one minute and endear me the next.