Copyright © Susanna Kearsley All Rights Reserved.   

Although the house is given a different name in my novel, the present-day story of A Desperate Fortune takes place at La Maison de Chatou, a beautiful private home and guest house just outside Paris (and not far from the Chateau of Saint-Germain-en-Laye). I stayed here myself while doing research for the book, and I can highly recommend it.

Side Notes...

“My father said, we do not always get the things we want…”

For nearly 300 years, the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has lain unread - its secrets safe from prying eyes.

Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas has been hired by a once-famous historian to crack the journal's cipher. But when she arrives in Paris, Sara finds herself besieged by complications from all sides: the journal's reclusive owner, her charming Parisian neighbor, and Mary, whose journal doesn't hold the secrets Sara expects.

As Mary's tale grows more and more dire, Sara, too, must carefully choose which turning to find the road that will lead her safely home.

A Desperate Fortune Photos

Fascinating, immersive and twisty—twists not only of plot, but of character and time. I love a novel that deals with codes and ciphers, and the other ways in which people keep their secrets.   

Diana Gabaldon

See my photos of the actual settings and buildings used in the book.

On Location...