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The Grand Design

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She has one last chance to prove she chose the right course for her life. In 1908, young Dorothy Tuckerman chafes under the bland, beige traditions of her socialite circles. Only the aristocracy’s annual summer trips to the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia spark her imagination. In this naturally beautiful place, an unexpected romance with an Italian racecar driver gi She has one last chance to prove she chose the right course for her life. In 1908, young Dorothy Tuckerman chafes under the bland, beige traditions of her socialite circles. Only the aristocracy’s annual summer trips to the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia spark her imagination. In this naturally beautiful place, an unexpected romance with an Italian racecar driver gives Dorothy a taste of the passion and adventure she wants. But her family intervenes, sentencing Dorothy to the life she hopes to escape. Thirty-eight years later, as World War II draws to a close, Dorothy has done everything a woman in the early twentieth century should not: she has divorced her husband—scandalous—and established America’s first interior design firm—shocking. Now, Dorothy returns to the Greenbrier with the assignment to restore it to something even greater than its original glory. With her beloved company’s future hanging in the balance and brimming with daring, unconventional ideas, Dorothy has one more chance to give her dreams wings or succumb to her what society tells her is her inescapable fate. Based on the true story of famed designer Dorothy Draper, The Greenbrier Resort is a moving tale of one woman’s quest to transform the walls that hold her captive.


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She has one last chance to prove she chose the right course for her life. In 1908, young Dorothy Tuckerman chafes under the bland, beige traditions of her socialite circles. Only the aristocracy’s annual summer trips to the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia spark her imagination. In this naturally beautiful place, an unexpected romance with an Italian racecar driver gi She has one last chance to prove she chose the right course for her life. In 1908, young Dorothy Tuckerman chafes under the bland, beige traditions of her socialite circles. Only the aristocracy’s annual summer trips to the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia spark her imagination. In this naturally beautiful place, an unexpected romance with an Italian racecar driver gives Dorothy a taste of the passion and adventure she wants. But her family intervenes, sentencing Dorothy to the life she hopes to escape. Thirty-eight years later, as World War II draws to a close, Dorothy has done everything a woman in the early twentieth century should not: she has divorced her husband—scandalous—and established America’s first interior design firm—shocking. Now, Dorothy returns to the Greenbrier with the assignment to restore it to something even greater than its original glory. With her beloved company’s future hanging in the balance and brimming with daring, unconventional ideas, Dorothy has one more chance to give her dreams wings or succumb to her what society tells her is her inescapable fate. Based on the true story of famed designer Dorothy Draper, The Greenbrier Resort is a moving tale of one woman’s quest to transform the walls that hold her captive.

30 review for The Grand Design

  1. 5 out of 5

    James

    A little over five years ago, I spent New Year's Eve with a group of friends at The Greenbrier Resort. It is among the top trips in my life thus far, and the experience will always stay with me. From the décor of the hotel to the extravagant meals, underground bunker, elaborate grounds, and monumental history within its walls, I can't imagine a way to spend a better start to a new year. When I saw this book on NetGalley, I absolutely had to read it. Thankfully, I received an early copy and am ke A little over five years ago, I spent New Year's Eve with a group of friends at The Greenbrier Resort. It is among the top trips in my life thus far, and the experience will always stay with me. From the décor of the hotel to the extravagant meals, underground bunker, elaborate grounds, and monumental history within its walls, I can't imagine a way to spend a better start to a new year. When I saw this book on NetGalley, I absolutely had to read it. Thankfully, I received an early copy and am keen to share my unbiased opinions in this review. Historical fiction can be tough to write. So much of the detail must be precise, yet the story needs to have flair and drama in order to hook readers. I remembered much about the resort and Dorothy Draper, which was handled spectacularly, but I also learned immense more from this novel. Set in two time periods, just before World War 1 and the late 1940s, we meet a young Dorothy who's been promised to the son of a wealthy family friend. All the rich and famous, proper families summer at The Greenbrier, then known as White Sulphur Springs, and it's about coming out parties and politics. What a time period to have been part of!? I might've been born in the wrong century. Dorothy and her pseudo-beau do not want to be married, but they love one another as friends. Then a race car driver from Italy arrives, and everything changes. In the 1940s, after World War Two, Dorothy returns, now divorced from a doctor (neither the original beau or the race car driver) and is given the gigantic task of redesigning The Greenbrier after it served as a war hospital and high-end prison for foreign diplomats. Her ex-husband's new wife is one of the decorators who might steal the job from Dorothy, and her kids have flocked to the new wife. Where did her life go wrong, she essentially asks? Callaway does a wonderful job balancing the history and design elements of this special place. She uses facts and fiction to create a bright and curious story, allowing us to love and hate Dorothy's personality all at the same time. Much of the glory about the hotel is found in the details of this book, and I found myself eager to keep reading of the relationships, design ideas, and conflicts brewing in Dorothy's life. A side story with a long-time worker at the hotel adds the perfect sentimentality, and the hijinks of the girls from the early time period is charming. I found myself a bit overwhelmed in a few tedious details and monologue-like scenes, but mostly it flowed seamlessly. Easily 4.5 stars.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Karren Sandercock

    In 1908. Dorothy Tuckerman’s family stay every summer at the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. This year her parents are putting pressure on her to court and marry Warren Abercrombie and the only feelings Dorothy has for him are as a friend. Fiorenzo Rossi a handsome Italian racing car driver is staying at the resort with his uncle and suddenly Dorothy’s contemplating taking a different path to the one her parents have planned for her. Will she do what her parents and society expect of her or In 1908. Dorothy Tuckerman’s family stay every summer at the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. This year her parents are putting pressure on her to court and marry Warren Abercrombie and the only feelings Dorothy has for him are as a friend. Fiorenzo Rossi a handsome Italian racing car driver is staying at the resort with his uncle and suddenly Dorothy’s contemplating taking a different path to the one her parents have planned for her. Will she do what her parents and society expect of her or will Dorothy throw caution to the wind and follow her heart! In 1946. Dorothy Draper is a divorced mother and she’s started her own interior design business. The Second World War has ended, she has been given the job of transforming the Ashford General Hospital or the Greenbrier Resort into a luxury hotel. The old resort where she stayed with her family years ago is gone, in it's place is a larger building and it needs a lot of work. The dual timeline story follows Dorothy from being a young debutante, a woman who has been through a war, the great depression, a divorce, and is now a career woman. After her marriage ended, a way of keeping her mind off her problems was to surround herself with bright colors and she found it exciting styling a new room and now she has to do this for an entire hotel, with a budget and she’s feeling the pressure. Dorothy needs the commission from this job to keep her business afloat and she doesn't want to have to fire her dedicated staff. Dorothy has a vision, using some original fixtures and furniture and her new innovative ideas. I received a copy of The Grand Design/The Greenbrier Resort by Joy Callaway from Edelweiss and HarperCollins Focus in exchange for an honest review. Prior to reading this book I had never heard of Dorothy Draper, she’s an inspirational woman and a pioneer in modern interior design. If you like historical fiction about architecture, old buildings and decorating them, I highly recommend this well written book and five stars from me. https://karrenreadsbooks.blogspot.com/ https://www.facebook.com/KarrenReadsH...

  3. 5 out of 5

    Shirley Chapel

    This was a captivating book that completely swept me in from the beginning. It is a split timeline novel and begins in 1908 and ends in 1961. The author smoothly transitions her readers back and forth through the years. The story was very well researched and I felt like I was there at the Greenbrier Resort mingling with the guests. The book was based on the true story of Dorothy Draper, who was America’s first to establish an interior design firm. It is her story from the time she was a debutant This was a captivating book that completely swept me in from the beginning. It is a split timeline novel and begins in 1908 and ends in 1961. The author smoothly transitions her readers back and forth through the years. The story was very well researched and I felt like I was there at the Greenbrier Resort mingling with the guests. The book was based on the true story of Dorothy Draper, who was America’s first to establish an interior design firm. It is her story from the time she was a debutante attending the balls at the famous Greenbrier to her career in interior decorating. In 1946 to 1948, Dorothy took on the challenge of returning the Greenbrier Resort to its former glory and beyond with a whole new design. I found this book to be very entertaining, realistic and informative. It was almost impossible to put the book down once I started reading it. I loved the happily ever after ending and it goes on my self of favorite books. 1908 Dorothy Tuckerman came from a wealthy New York family. She was a debutante just coming of age to marry. She was bored with her life and keeping up with the demands society placed on the rich. She didn’t appreciate how her wealthy family and friends looked down on the less fortunate. Dorothy often longed to just run away from it all and be free to do the things she really wanted and find a man she could fall in love with, not caring what family he came from or what social standing he had. Her parents had a young man from the Abercrombie family picked out for Dorothy to one day marry but she considered him a friend and not someone she wanted for a husband. Then Enzo Rossi, Italian race car driver came to visit The Greenbrier Resort. He was handsome and he made her heart pound when he looked at her. Enzo and Dorothy fell in love but Mr and Mrs Tuckerman didn’t approve. Dorothy felt she was a prisoner of her family’s wealth and social standing. Would she give it all up to gain her freedom to love Enzo and marry him? 1946 The years have passed and now Dorothy Draper is divorced and has her own interior design business. She is a mother and grandmother and very independent. She is no longer a member of upper New York society and in fact she is looked down on because she has a career in a successful business and is divorced from her husband. Dorothy has just been hired by the Chairman of the C&O Railroad to restore the Greenbrier Resort to its original glory. It had been turned into a hospital during the war years but now C&O wants Dorothy to restore it as a resort. Dorothy wants to completely change it to a brighter more colorful place. It will have Dorothy Draper’s creative touch and people would long remember her legacy in years to come. She has been given a budget and a limited amount of time to do the renovations. As Dorothy walks the halls of Greenbrier hotel memories come flooding back and she realizes that after all these years she is still in love with Enzo. This assignment is an overwhelming challenge for her but a great opportunity for her business to grow . Will she be able to design a newer Greenbrier Resort within the budget allowed her and the time frame she’s been given to complete the Grand Design? I recommend this book to readers of Historical Romance and Woman’s Fiction. It is a stand alone read. This book is scheduled to be released on 5/17/22. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. #TheGrandDesign#NetGalley

  4. 4 out of 5

    Joan Happel

    This is a dual timeline novel about the famed interior designer Dorothy Draper. The story alternates between 1908 and 1946 and is set in the glamours Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. In 1908 Dorothy is spending the summer at Greenbrier with her family. They are expecting her to accept a marriage proposal from Warren, the son of family friends. Dorothy however has other plans. She dreams of being more than just another socialite wife, and mother. In addition, Dorothy is distracted by Enzo, an This is a dual timeline novel about the famed interior designer Dorothy Draper. The story alternates between 1908 and 1946 and is set in the glamours Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. In 1908 Dorothy is spending the summer at Greenbrier with her family. They are expecting her to accept a marriage proposal from Warren, the son of family friends. Dorothy however has other plans. She dreams of being more than just another socialite wife, and mother. In addition, Dorothy is distracted by Enzo, an attractive Italian race-car driver. The alternate chapters are set in 1946, and Dorothy has returned to Greenbrier restore the famed resort back to its former glory. Dorothy's career has faced setbacks as has her reputation in society due to her divorce from her husband. She soon finds inspiration in the resort's beautiful surroundings, and she is determined to bring her vision to fruition, despite the obstacles thrown in her way by owners, employees, and the memories still haunting her. Prior to reading The Grand Design, I had not heard of Dorothy Draper or the Greenbrier Resort. The author, through vivid description and wonderful dialogue, transports the reader back to the waning days of the gilded age, just before society changed forever as the result of two world wars and the Great Depression. Sprinkled into this grand setting, are cameos of notable figures of the time periods from politics, fashion, and art such as William Howard Taft and his wife and daughter. For those of us who will never have the opportunity to see the beauty of Greenbrier, nor experience the privileged life of the upper classes; this is a wonderful escape into a different place and time. Thank you to Harper Muse and NetGalley for the e-ARC.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly Brock

    Joy Callaway gracefully transports readers to the early glamour of the landmark Greenbrier Resort, introducing the brash, young Dorothy Draper, ill-suited for the bleak confines of high society. The story follows her into the future as a renowned decorator, hired to restore the hotel. As she leaves her infamous mark, both the Greenbrier and Dorothy boldly come to life, filling the page with color and reflections on heartbreak and passion. Clandestine undertakings and encounters with historical f Joy Callaway gracefully transports readers to the early glamour of the landmark Greenbrier Resort, introducing the brash, young Dorothy Draper, ill-suited for the bleak confines of high society. The story follows her into the future as a renowned decorator, hired to restore the hotel. As she leaves her infamous mark, both the Greenbrier and Dorothy boldly come to life, filling the page with color and reflections on heartbreak and passion. Clandestine undertakings and encounters with historical figures who've frequented the resort are delightful surprises, crafted and researched meticulously. But it is Dorothy herself, and a timeless love story that ultimately deliver an ending that will leave readers eager to visit the Greenbrier for themselves, feeling they’ve stepped from dreary Kansas into Oz.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dianne

    I usually love learning about famous people under the guise of history/fiction. I admit that learning about Greenbrier was fascinating -my husband knew more about this resort than I did because of some old-time famous golf tournament! I thought that learning about the famous decorator, Dorothy Draper, would be fascinating too, but it was not. She seems to be or at least was portrayed as a selfish, whiny, argumentative, *itch. I know that women with aspirations back in the early '40 really needed I usually love learning about famous people under the guise of history/fiction. I admit that learning about Greenbrier was fascinating -my husband knew more about this resort than I did because of some old-time famous golf tournament! I thought that learning about the famous decorator, Dorothy Draper, would be fascinating too, but it was not. She seems to be or at least was portrayed as a selfish, whiny, argumentative, *itch. I know that women with aspirations back in the early '40 really needed to be assertive, but between the two stories...I found I just did not like Dorothy. I could not connect with her, I could not find any sympathy for her, and the more I learned about her, the less I cared. The dual timeline was frustrating for me. The multiple characters in both timelines were equally frustrating. I'm being frank when I say that this was a disappointing read for me. *ARC supplied by the publisher Harper Muse, the author, and ATTL/Edelweiss.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Literary Redhead

    THE GRAND DESIGN by Joy Callaway Harper Muse Pub Date: May 17 I knew nothing about Dorothy Draper, socialite and founder of the first interior design firm, and eagerly read Joy Callaway's historical fiction novel, The Grand Design, which compellingly tells her story. As a young woman in the early 1900s, she adored her family's yearly trips to the magnificent Greenbrier Resort, set in the uncommon beauty of West Virginia. During one visit, she falls in love with an Italian race car driver, who gives THE GRAND DESIGN by Joy Callaway Harper Muse Pub Date: May 17 I knew nothing about Dorothy Draper, socialite and founder of the first interior design firm, and eagerly read Joy Callaway's historical fiction novel, The Grand Design, which compellingly tells her story. As a young woman in the early 1900s, she adored her family's yearly trips to the magnificent Greenbrier Resort, set in the uncommon beauty of West Virginia. During one visit, she falls in love with an Italian race car driver, who gives her a taste for a freer life and a longing for more than a confined socialite's existence. But her family ends their relationship, and Dorothy fears she'll be trapped into a conventional life. Through dual timelines, we see how the young Dorothy evolves into a courageous woman who later divorces her husband -- scandalous then -- and starts a daring business in interior design. And we follow her progress 38 years later when after WWII, she applies her audacious ideas to renovating Greenbriar once more. Her business and reputation now hang in the balance. Will she succeed? A must-read for historical fiction fans, interior design lovers, and those who adore gracefully written stories about strong inspiring women. Thanks to author Joy Callaway, Harper Muse, and #NetGalley for the ARC. Opinions are mine. #JoyCallaway #HarperMuse #NetGalley #historicalfictionnovel #DorothyDraperInteriorDesigner #novelsffeaturingboldwomen #TheGreenbriarResort #WestVirginiasetting#heiressfoundsfirstinteriordesignfirm #bookstagramcommunity

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    The Greenbrier Resort by Joy Callaway is a great historical fiction that takes us to the grand and steeped in history Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. This is such a wonderful and unique book that encouraged me to devour it within two days. Growing up in WV, I have been surrounded by the images, history, and activity regarding the Greenbrier, but the way the author presented her dual timeline narrative, really drew me in and made this fun and fresh. Weaving between, what feels like two differ The Greenbrier Resort by Joy Callaway is a great historical fiction that takes us to the grand and steeped in history Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. This is such a wonderful and unique book that encouraged me to devour it within two days. Growing up in WV, I have been surrounded by the images, history, and activity regarding the Greenbrier, but the way the author presented her dual timeline narrative, really drew me in and made this fun and fresh. Weaving between, what feels like two different generations and worlds, she takes us between 1908 and the 1940s in the point of view of the true to life Dorothy Draper. Most assuredly a woman before her time, and we get a firsthand look at her life through this story. There are surprises, twists, cameos if famous names, fashion, art, and everything one could possibly hope for in design and architecture. The author brings to life in exquisite detail the passions, motivations, intense undertaking, and the sheer talent that Ms. Draper possessed and contributed to help make the Greenbrier look as it does today. Being able to see a part of Dorothy and how her path to this point contributes to this outcome is also beyond fabulous. I highly recommend this gem and this will be one of my favorites of 2022…guaranteed. 5/5 stars Thank you NG and Harper Muse for this stunning arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts immediately upon publication on 5/17/22.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Rachel McMillan

    From endorsement: There is something so intimate and personal about Callaway’s love for her eponymous Greenbrier Resort that when met with her competent blend of research and well-crafted fictional speculation will delight aficionados of Marie Benedict and Allison Pataki. Callaway fashions her prose with the same flourish, span and vision as Draper foresaw a revolution of interior artistry. A consummate wordsmith, Callaway’s fictional love letter is not only written for a woman who defied the st From endorsement: There is something so intimate and personal about Callaway’s love for her eponymous Greenbrier Resort that when met with her competent blend of research and well-crafted fictional speculation will delight aficionados of Marie Benedict and Allison Pataki. Callaway fashions her prose with the same flourish, span and vision as Draper foresaw a revolution of interior artistry. A consummate wordsmith, Callaway’s fictional love letter is not only written for a woman who defied the structure of her gender and time period, but also to a place that incites as much magic in the reader as it clearly does its author. The Greenbrier Resort made me homesick for a place I have never been.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Anne

    Thanks to Harper Muse, I was provided an ARC of The Grand Design by Joy Callaway via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. ****Publishing May 17, 2022**** I loved how this author chose to write about two significant time periods in Dorothy Tuckerman / Draper’s life as it gives you the insight into how she became a trailblazer for women with her forward thinking, risk taking behavior, and following her heart! This book includes two timelines: 1908 : Dorothy Tuckermsn vacations to the Greenbr Thanks to Harper Muse, I was provided an ARC of The Grand Design by Joy Callaway via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. ****Publishing May 17, 2022**** I loved how this author chose to write about two significant time periods in Dorothy Tuckerman / Draper’s life as it gives you the insight into how she became a trailblazer for women with her forward thinking, risk taking behavior, and following her heart! This book includes two timelines: 1908 : Dorothy Tuckermsn vacations to the Greenbriar Hotel with her family as a young adult and all the societal pressure she faced and how she handled it. Her father has in mind who she is going to marry, but is this what Dorothy wants? 1946 : When Dorothy is in her 50’s and her career is established, she is asked to do a redesign of the Greenbriar Hotel after it had been left to disrepair during WWll. With the concern for money, she is pressured to keep it the way it once was, but she has plans to design it to be more vibrant and colorful. Can she come to a compromise with keeping with tradition, but also getting what she wants with a more updated design? Can she prove she has what it takes to get it up and running? A fascinating read about Dorthy Draper and the Greenbriar hotel, and all the many changes changes it went through! I loved how Joy Callaway included in her author note her inspiration for the book, her research, and how she incorporated it into her book. Perfect for those who love a well researched Historical Fiction book. A great book club pick as well as it will lead to many great discussions!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ Jenn Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ Schu

    This is a fictionalized account of Dorothy Draper, a well-known designer best known for her bold colors. Draper was not an easy character to like, she was a complex woman who kept her emotions in check and sometimes at the expense of those around her. She was most in love with her work and was dedicated to the restoration and decoration of The Greenbrier. I loved reading about her ideas for decorating The Greenbrier, and it was pretty extravagant. I also enjoyed reading about the history of The This is a fictionalized account of Dorothy Draper, a well-known designer best known for her bold colors. Draper was not an easy character to like, she was a complex woman who kept her emotions in check and sometimes at the expense of those around her. She was most in love with her work and was dedicated to the restoration and decoration of The Greenbrier. I loved reading about her ideas for decorating The Greenbrier, and it was pretty extravagant. I also enjoyed reading about the history of The Greenbrier, and I still would love to know more as the author gave glimpses as opposed to an entire scoped account of the resort. I should also mention that this story is primarily broken into two timelines, Dorothy's early life (mostly fictionalized) and her time designing The Greenbrier post-WWII. As with most stories that have dual timelines, I preferred one timeline to the other; in this case, I liked reading about Dorothy's decorating in the late 1940s, which was the least fictionalized portion of the book. Overall, a well-written story. Thank you, Net Galley, for the opportunity to read for a review. ⭐⭐⭐

  12. 5 out of 5

    Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews

    I know I am not going to do this book justice with my review, but this book is AMAZING! The book captured the old-world elegance of the early 1900s when everyone was much more proper, women were presented to society, and marriages were arranged, but sometimes the heart falls in love with another person or place. That is the case for Dorothy Draper, an infamous American Designer from 1923 until the 1960s.  I do love a good historical fiction book about a real person from history. I learn so much a I know I am not going to do this book justice with my review, but this book is AMAZING! The book captured the old-world elegance of the early 1900s when everyone was much more proper, women were presented to society, and marriages were arranged, but sometimes the heart falls in love with another person or place. That is the case for Dorothy Draper, an infamous American Designer from 1923 until the 1960s.  I do love a good historical fiction book about a real person from history. I learn so much about the time and the person. While it is fiction, many of the basic facts are true such as her career and the company she created, and her marriage, divorce, and children. I always love to read the author's notes when it comes to a book like this to learn where they drew their information, what is fact vs fiction, and what twists they added to make it an intriguing story. If nothing else, this type of book always has me searching the internet for more details about the main character. The early 1900s was an elegant time where women were dressed to the nines, men were in suits, and people would vacation for months at a time at resorts like The Greenbriar which is depicted in this novel. I loved reading about the dances, races, picnics, and so much more that were part of their daily lives.  The fictional part of this story is a love connection between Dorothy and Enzo during the summer of 1908. They don't end up together (well because he is not real) but the story is beautifully told and while I suspected the ending, I almost thought it wasn't going to be as I imagined due to some other factors that came into play. I admire Dorothy and what she stood for and really pioneered the way for women designers. I loved that she wanted color and for a room to be fun and relaxing and not dark and dreary as The Greenbriar was prior to her makeover after WWII. There are times when Dorothy acted like a child, but I understood her frustration with life and what was expected of her as a woman at that time. I thank her and all of the other women that came before me that made an effort to make sure that we were heard and not taken lightly or dismissed out of hand. I had a hard time putting this book down and highly recommend it and give it 5 paws up.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jonann loves book talk❤♥️❤

    The Grand Design by Joy Callaway, is historical fiction based loosely on the life of renowned interior designer Dorothy Tuckerman Draper. I love the absolutely breathtaking descriptions that place readers at the heart of the book set in two separate timelines. It is a beautiful heartfelt book. 1908 Dorothy Tuckerman's family spends summers at the popular Greenbrier Resort located in gorgeous West Virginia. The family attends social events at the resort which Dorothy finds a bit boring until she m The Grand Design by Joy Callaway, is historical fiction based loosely on the life of renowned interior designer Dorothy Tuckerman Draper. I love the absolutely breathtaking descriptions that place readers at the heart of the book set in two separate timelines. It is a beautiful heartfelt book. 1908 Dorothy Tuckerman's family spends summers at the popular Greenbrier Resort located in gorgeous West Virginia. The family attends social events at the resort which Dorothy finds a bit boring until she meets handsome Enzo Rossi. Enzo is a racecar driver. He wants to pursue a life with Dorothy, but her parents have other plans for Dorothy's future. 1946 38 years years later, Dorothy has been through an unseemly divorce. She is the owner of her own interior design company (which is very improper for a woman in her era). Dorothy tries to cast off rumors and her scandalous reputation to rebuild her life as a independent woman. She jumps at the chance to restore the rundown Greenbrier Resort (which sadly was turned into a hospital during WW2). Dorothy needs this job to go smoothly in order to keep her design company afloat. Will Dorothy be able to compete this massive undertaking and gain her critics respect? Before reading this book, I knew nothing about Dorothy Draper or the historic Greenbrier Resort. I went scrambling to the internet for more information and pictures. This is a fascinating novel that includes author's notes about the book that you will want to read. The Grand Design will be published May 17th. (4.5 rating bumped up to 5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐) My deepest respect and thanks to NetGalley and Harper Muse, for allowing me to review this interesting look back at Dorothy Draper's life. I loved every page of this book!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth Howard

    I was very fortunate to receive an advance copy of Joy Callaway’s upcoming new novel “The Greenbrier Resort”: I started it a mere two days ago, and could not put it down. This was my first read of Joy’s, but will certainly not be my last. This wonderful work of historical fiction checked so many five star boxes for me. While historical fiction has become my favorite genre as of late, I particularly enjoy novels portraying strong women in history. This one certainly does, as it tells the story of I was very fortunate to receive an advance copy of Joy Callaway’s upcoming new novel “The Greenbrier Resort”: I started it a mere two days ago, and could not put it down. This was my first read of Joy’s, but will certainly not be my last. This wonderful work of historical fiction checked so many five star boxes for me. While historical fiction has become my favorite genre as of late, I particularly enjoy novels portraying strong women in history. This one certainly does, as it tells the story of the famed decorator Dorothy Draper. It also included one of my most favorite resorts, The Greenbrier, where I’ve been fortunate to stay on several occasions. I have always loved the fabulous and unique decor at The Greenbrier, but I did not know all of the fascinating history behind both the hotel and its decor. I enjoyed Joy’s detailed writing, making The Greenbrier a character all its own in the story. I loved the dual-timeline story of Dorothy, her family history with the resort, and the details of her intense work there for so many years. It also featured the various friendships and unique relationships Dorothy had throughout her life, with some twists I never saw coming. The author’s note was also wonderful, but do not read it first. This book will be released on May 17, 2022 and I predict it will be an instant best seller. I highly recommend it for any reader, but especially those who enjoy reading about women in history, design, decor, or have ties to The Greenbrier. It has made me want to book my next visit there very soon! Thank you Joy!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Danielle B

    The young Dorothy Tuckerman is a bit board of her life in 1908 with her family of socialites. The summer trips to Greenbrier resort in West Virginia are the one thing that she really enjoys. When Dorothy begins a romantic involvement with an Italian racecar driver, her parents quickly intervene. Fast forward almost 4 decades later, Dorothy has crossed all of the limitations set for women in the 1940’s. She is divorced and has started her own business as an interior designer. Now Dorothy must ret The young Dorothy Tuckerman is a bit board of her life in 1908 with her family of socialites. The summer trips to Greenbrier resort in West Virginia are the one thing that she really enjoys. When Dorothy begins a romantic involvement with an Italian racecar driver, her parents quickly intervene. Fast forward almost 4 decades later, Dorothy has crossed all of the limitations set for women in the 1940’s. She is divorced and has started her own business as an interior designer. Now Dorothy must return to Greenbriar with the assignment to restore its lost beauty! I am a history buff so I really enjoyed this one. With both timelines in the distant past, it was a fascinating read for me. The setting was well chosen and described in a way that you felt like you were right there with the characters. Of course, some romance was included for good measure. I would recommend this excellent historical fiction story! Many thanks to NetGalley and Harper Muse for my ARC in exchange for my honest review. This review will be posted to my Instagram Blog (@coffee.break.book.reviews) in the near future.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Under the skillful pen of Ms. Callaway, the grandeur of the Greenbrier comes to life inviting readers to become the next generation to be enthralled with the history of this magnificent resort. Nestled amidst the natural beauty of the West Virginia mountains, this is a place that has long served as a refuge, one of renewal for its guests. This split time novel grabbed my attention with Dorothy Draper's story, a designer that flaunted societal expectations to have a successful career in design. H Under the skillful pen of Ms. Callaway, the grandeur of the Greenbrier comes to life inviting readers to become the next generation to be enthralled with the history of this magnificent resort. Nestled amidst the natural beauty of the West Virginia mountains, this is a place that has long served as a refuge, one of renewal for its guests. This split time novel grabbed my attention with Dorothy Draper's story, a designer that flaunted societal expectations to have a successful career in design. Her greatest achievement was in the redecorating of the Greenbriar following WWII. While I am aware that certain aspects of the story were fictional, I was intrigued by both the factual and the might-have-been aspects of this story. With impeccable attention to detail, this story is filled with nostalgia, lost-loves and heartbreak, but most of all, it tells the story of an amazing woman with an incredible drive and vision to make the world a more beautiful place. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book from the author/ publisher through Netgalley. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jenni Walsh

    I really enjoyed this book! Joy Callaway is such a wonderfully visual writer and the story was in such an exceptional setting that I pictured everything going on, which then had me envisioning a series adaptation of The Grand Design. I could see a This is Us vibe where Dorothy's storyline is shown in different times of her life, mixed with a feeling similar to Downton Abbey, Belgravia, or even a touch of non-spicy Bridgerton. I'd be there for that tv series. How can we make this happen :) I really enjoyed this book! Joy Callaway is such a wonderfully visual writer and the story was in such an exceptional setting that I pictured everything going on, which then had me envisioning a series adaptation of The Grand Design. I could see a This is Us vibe where Dorothy's storyline is shown in different times of her life, mixed with a feeling similar to Downton Abbey, Belgravia, or even a touch of non-spicy Bridgerton. I'd be there for that tv series. How can we make this happen :)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Arielle

    3.75✩ Joy Callaway’s newest novel transports readers to the glamour, the glory and the unique decor of The Greenbrier landmark in West Virginia. Incredibly rich in details and romantic, the book is a captivating story presenting the early life and the career of famous decorator Dorothy Draper. Callaway beautifully balances historical facts and events in addition to architecture and design elements in an engrossing and charming story. Following two timelines, the first in 1908 and the second in the 3.75✩ Joy Callaway’s newest novel transports readers to the glamour, the glory and the unique decor of The Greenbrier landmark in West Virginia. Incredibly rich in details and romantic, the book is a captivating story presenting the early life and the career of famous decorator Dorothy Draper. Callaway beautifully balances historical facts and events in addition to architecture and design elements in an engrossing and charming story. Following two timelines, the first in 1908 and the second in the 1940s, we are introduced to the confines of high society with immersive world-building, compelling characters and famous guests. The author delights us with surprises, art, fashion and architecture references, and political cameos. It was my first time reading about The Greenbrier's expansive and fascinating story. I loved how Callaway brought the very resort to life as one of the main characters and great romances and how we were able to get a firsthand look at Dorothy Draper’s life through a lovely portrait of one of the most enchanting and independent women in her time. Some passages were a little tedious and repetitive to read, but overall, The Greenbrier was a pleasant read. *I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    This Author Joy Callaway or the Publisher Harper Muse cannot make up its mind on this Title because when I requested it--it was called the "Greenbrier Resort," and that is how it appears on the Good Reads website. On Net Galley and displayed on the cover on it is called "The Grand Design," and that title appears on the books cover also on the Net Galley website. So it is quite confusing to me what the Title is. I had this happen to me in the past twice where I had to post two identical reviews f This Author Joy Callaway or the Publisher Harper Muse cannot make up its mind on this Title because when I requested it--it was called the "Greenbrier Resort," and that is how it appears on the Good Reads website. On Net Galley and displayed on the cover on it is called "The Grand Design," and that title appears on the books cover also on the Net Galley website. So it is quite confusing to me what the Title is. I had this happen to me in the past twice where I had to post two identical reviews for the same book. So my format is different and I also found the duel timelines frustrating in this publication in all honesty. It is a common way Author's tell the story, but in this one it didn't flow well. The First Timeline takes place in 1908, a young well to do family along with a few recognizable ones are named but the main protagonist named Dorothy Tuckerman does not follow her family's choice for her to be married to. Instead she is infatuated with a young Italian race car driver named Enzo Rossi. The two of them sort of hint at romance but it struck me as the two were playing games. They are staying at a posh getaway called the Greenbrier resort, in West Virginia. It is described as palatial and with healing waters. The Taft family is staying there so you know its for the elite. There are many characters but after reading more I was able to understand who was who within all of the name dropping. Dorothy has been groomed and expected to choose a husband that she only feels friendship for. So there is that angst in the mood. I love historical fiction, but this was not for me and I'm really surprised considering it is an interesting premise. I just feel like the writing wasn't cohesive or engaging. But the premise was interesting but with the confusion in Titles is sort of how the execution of the storytelling was all over the place and it just wasn't for me. I wanted to love this but honestly I didn't. 2.5 stars! The other timeline takes place at the same location only it is 1946 after World War II. Dorothy Draper the first Designer is tasked to restoring the Greenbrier resort back to its magnificence. Dorothy has just gotten divorced from her husband Dan who is a physician who has a new wife named Elisabeth who Dorothy is insecure that she will lose this job to Elisabeth. There is more name dropping such as Dorothy is handed a stack of mail and she chooses to read the one from Eleanor Roosevelt. It is mentioned that her husband Dan was a former physician to FDR. The resort is not anything like its former glory and Dorothy along with others are tasked to make it magnificent. It currently has lost all of its former glory and it was a field hospital during the war. So Dorothy as well as her team have their work cut out for them. One reviewer compared this to the work of Alison Pataki, whose work is much more loved by me and I can easily compare because I recently read and reviewed her historical work called The Magnificent lives of Marjorie Post which my five star review can be found here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show.... I found this to be in no way the same high quality writing. I am sorry but I do give a fair and *honest* review as my arrangement has been. I can't lie and say that I loved this when I found the writing to be disappointing. Don't get me wrong. I love historical fiction and I was so excited to read about a famous Designer that was ahead of her time. I just didn't love this and was disappointed, but I wanted to. My heartfelt and sincere best wishes to both the Author, Joy Calloway and Harper Muse for success with this Iconic trailblazing woman, Dorothy Draper. I absolutely love the premise and am pleased that other reviewers loved this. Publication Date: May 17, 2022 Thank you to Net Galley, Joy Callaway and Harper Muse for generously providing me with my ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. #The GreenbrierResort #TheGrandDesign #JoyCallaway #HarperMuse #NetGalley

  20. 4 out of 5

    Davida Chazan

    While I might not want a Dorothy Draper design for my home, there's no question that she was an influential interior designer (maybe even the first of her kind) of the mid-19th century. Here's my review of the novel by her. https://tcl-bookreviews.com/2022/05/2... While I might not want a Dorothy Draper design for my home, there's no question that she was an influential interior designer (maybe even the first of her kind) of the mid-19th century. Here's my review of the novel by her. https://tcl-bookreviews.com/2022/05/2...

  21. 5 out of 5

    JANELLE

    I hardly know where to start on this review - this book goes through so many emotions. This one will stick with you a while after reading it! So well-written, the descriptions are amazing and you'll love the characters! It's a dual-timeline historical set at The Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, WVa. Before reading this book, I hadn't heard of the resort nor Dorothy Draper - but while reading it, I was brought to mind of The Grand Hotel in MI, and wasn't surprised when I later learned t I hardly know where to start on this review - this book goes through so many emotions. This one will stick with you a while after reading it! So well-written, the descriptions are amazing and you'll love the characters! It's a dual-timeline historical set at The Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, WVa. Before reading this book, I hadn't heard of the resort nor Dorothy Draper - but while reading it, I was brought to mind of The Grand Hotel in MI, and wasn't surprised when I later learned that was also decorated by DD. FIrst section is set in 1908, with socialite Dorothy at age 19. This part of the story reminds me of the Dirty Dancing movie - rich, influential families spending every summer together playing games and betting on the ponies. Dorothy is bucking at tradition, she's looking for something different. In walks, Enzo - Italian racecar driver - and their romance beings. And oh, what a romance! Second section is 1946, where Dorothy is hired to refurbish the resort, after it'd been used as a hospital. Her goal is to bring back the romance of her hayday at the resort, only in her style -- with lots of color and big, bold prints. But while there, she finds ghosts of seasons past and of loves lost. Don't miss this one! Thank you to NetGalley, the author and publisher for a temporary, digital ARC in return for my review.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Eunice R

    Sometimes while reading historical fiction accounts one discovers there is barely a whisper of history. Not so this Greenbrier Resort. The main characters Dorothy Draper, who became a renowned interior designer, and The Greenbrier, a wonderful summer resort edifice at which even presidents of the USA would be guests, were both very real. The Greenbrier still "lives" on to today, having withstood the winds of time since we are introduced in the story line of this book which begins in 1908. The ti Sometimes while reading historical fiction accounts one discovers there is barely a whisper of history. Not so this Greenbrier Resort. The main characters Dorothy Draper, who became a renowned interior designer, and The Greenbrier, a wonderful summer resort edifice at which even presidents of the USA would be guests, were both very real. The Greenbrier still "lives" on to today, having withstood the winds of time since we are introduced in the story line of this book which begins in 1908. The time line actually straddles those earlier Victorian times, and into the 1940's. The Victorian society rules that strictly governed what women could and could not do certainly is portrayed and how it overshadowed and affected them unjustly, especially in the upper eschelons of old-wealth families. What made this story perk along in a most intriquing, fictional manner was the unauthorized and unrequited cloak of romance between Dorothy and heart-throbbingly handsome Enzo, the Italian. Both were faint with love for each other but were torn apart; would they ever reunite? For those interested in learning more about that earlier era and the history of Dorothy Draper, her magnificent interior design work and of her protege, Carleton Varney, there is a list of further recommended reading in the addenda. ~Eunice C., Reviewer/Blogger~ January 2022 Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own based on this copy.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Amy T. - Book lover!

    Thanks to Netgalley and HarperMuse for my ARC of The Grand Design. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. The Grand Design takes us to the Greenbrier Hotel through the life of designer and socialite Dorothy Draper. We see the grandeur of the Greenbrier in two different eras, the early 1900s and then later in the late 1940s. The thread that ties the two timelines are Dorothy Draper’s life as a young woman visiting in the 1900s and then as a designer to take the Greenbrier back t Thanks to Netgalley and HarperMuse for my ARC of The Grand Design. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. The Grand Design takes us to the Greenbrier Hotel through the life of designer and socialite Dorothy Draper. We see the grandeur of the Greenbrier in two different eras, the early 1900s and then later in the late 1940s. The thread that ties the two timelines are Dorothy Draper’s life as a young woman visiting in the 1900s and then as a designer to take the Greenbrier back to its glory after having served as hospital during the war. Callaway does an exquisite job of describing the grand and beautiful details while creating a love story that crosses eras. It is easy to see the confines of being a young woman heiress expected to marry well and live up to high society’s expectations. I truly enjoyed this work of historical fiction, and I find myself wanting to make a trip to the Greenbrier Hotel.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Tracy Sauvageau

    Thank you for the #giftedcopy of The Grand Design prior to release on May 17, 2022! I enjoyed the detail involved with the fashion and design work in this book. It was fascinating to learn about Dorothy Draper and her connection to The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia. I had not heard of either prior to reading this novel. I must admit the romance and the stories of the families that met there each summer kept me turning the pages. The descriptions made everything seem so real! I feel like I j Thank you for the #giftedcopy of The Grand Design prior to release on May 17, 2022! I enjoyed the detail involved with the fashion and design work in this book. It was fascinating to learn about Dorothy Draper and her connection to The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia. I had not heard of either prior to reading this novel. I must admit the romance and the stories of the families that met there each summer kept me turning the pages. The descriptions made everything seem so real! I feel like I just went on vacation at The Greenbrier myself!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Freeman

    Wow I am glad I picked up this book. I have to admit I learned about it when the author discussed the book with Rachel McMillan and I was intrigued to read the book, it took awhile but I have now had the chance to read the book and it was worth the wait. I really liked the authors writing style and story pulled me in, especially toward the end and I did not want to stop reading until I reached the end. I will look for other books by this author.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Melanie Hensey

    This was my first audio book and I’m sad to say that I didn’t really care for that format. I find it hard to pay attention. I also did not care for the narrator’s voice. The book was ok. I liked learning a little about the Greenbrier. But it was far to heavy on romance and light on history for my taste.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Pam Papworth

    Thank you HarperCollins Christian Publishing for sending me the ARC of this book. It was an enjoyable read, and now I would really like to visit The Greenbrier. I was so intrigued, I searched for photos and more information on the internet. I will look for other books by this author.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Messenger

    A very interesting read for me. Based on a true story and held my interest to the very end.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mere

    This is a slow methodically beautiful crafted novel about Dorothy Tuckerman and her life's achievements and love -- not just romantic passions but personal passions as well. I love stories with a dual timeline and in our novel, from 1908 vs 1946 - there is a back and forth between the two that balance out the story. The Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia is a big setting for our novel and one that I was initially unfamiliar with even though I have been to W.V. plenty of times - I hear West Virgi This is a slow methodically beautiful crafted novel about Dorothy Tuckerman and her life's achievements and love -- not just romantic passions but personal passions as well. I love stories with a dual timeline and in our novel, from 1908 vs 1946 - there is a back and forth between the two that balance out the story. The Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia is a big setting for our novel and one that I was initially unfamiliar with even though I have been to W.V. plenty of times - I hear West Virginia is for lovers. The writing style in this novel slowly develops and creates even minute detail of the characters not just for our protagnist but for the secondary characters as well and I so enjoyed that our author, Ms Calloway took the time to do that! If you enjoy stories of independant, sharp working women that follow their passions and are complex characters, this novel is for you. For fans of Masterpiece theater who enjoy historical fiction novels of renewal and rebirth of self --- this one is a stunner! Thank you to NetGalley and HarperMuse for the advanced copy of my book in exchange for my honest opinion.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Pamela Lamp

    "People lost all but a tiny ounce of childlike wonder as they grew to adulthood, and unless something extraordinary caught their eye, the conversation would turn to the weather or sport or, heaven forbid, professions." I was first introduced to Dorothy Draper and her fanciful interior design style when I stayed at The Greenbrier, in White Sulphur Springs, WV, a decade or so ago. Our room captivated and delighted me more than my husband. With swirling pinks and tropical greens, there was not a qui "People lost all but a tiny ounce of childlike wonder as they grew to adulthood, and unless something extraordinary caught their eye, the conversation would turn to the weather or sport or, heaven forbid, professions." I was first introduced to Dorothy Draper and her fanciful interior design style when I stayed at The Greenbrier, in White Sulphur Springs, WV, a decade or so ago. Our room captivated and delighted me more than my husband. With swirling pinks and tropical greens, there was not a quiet surface for the eyes to settle. And I adored it. I loved the charming prints and formal dining room, where we donned dressy clothes for dinner. The resort was truly a special place, steeped in tradition, and I couldn't wait to read the story behind its grandeur. Narrated by Dorothy, this historical fiction novel flips between 1908 and 1946. In 1908, younger Dorothy found love among the other wealthy and privileged socialites summering at the Greenbrier. In 1946, the interior designer Dorothy restored the resort, serving as a hospital during the war, to its former splendor. Although upper-crust society frowned upon an heiress actually "working," I enjoyed learning Dorothy desired a purpose and was the first to establish a professional design company. The book held my attention to the end, but I grew weary of hearing about her privileged life and all its trappings. Thus, a 3.5-star rating. I thank Harper Muse for the complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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