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Windfall: A Novel
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Windfall: A Novel

3.88  ·  Rating Details ·  1,151 Ratings  ·  88 Reviews
Sensible Cassia Fallon is married to a doctor for seven years when she inherits a large amount of money from her godmother. This enables her to leave her old life behind and embark on a new life with danger and passion. This is Penny Vincenzi at her utmost.
Hardcover, 624 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by The Overlook Press (first published November 10th 1997)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,895)
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Feb 11, 2010 Ginny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love, love, love Ms. Vincenzi's books. The only problem is that when I am reading them I can't find time to do ANYTHING else. If you love family dramas, excellent writing and plots that will keep you wanting more ... pick up any of her books.
Jan 09, 2015 Jeri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Downton Abbey meets The Young and the Restless, after which they all drive to Peyton Place. You'll see.
Dec 09, 2010 Jaylia3 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Set in 1930’s London, Cassia has always wanted to be a doctor but becoming pregnant by her medical school lover moves her onto the wife/motherhood path, and she tries to be gracious while her husband, a less worthy candidate for a medical practice, lives out a diminished version of her dreams. All that changes when she unexpectedly receives a windfall, a large inheritance from her entrancing but troubled godmother. Now Cassia can tentatively reenter the sophisticated society she left behind when ...more
Linda C
Slow start... I felt like I was reading the 2nd book of a series, since there were many characters/relationships that aren't fully explained. The book improved as it went along, although I didn't feel it was as good as her "No Angel" trilogy. She does, however, grasp British society from 1900 through WWII extremely well and, if you enjoy reading about rich English people during that time period, you will like this book. Was it the best book ever? No, not a long shot. Was it an enjoyable read? Ye ...more
May 20, 2010 Nette rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've just emerged from my annual bath in the sticky goodness of a 700-page Penny Vincenzi novel. The woman is a writing machine! Which, as usual, results in a lot of repetition and awkward sentences and ridiculous dialogue. For example, in the first 100 pages, four people are described as "turning gray" (two with exhaustion, one with fright, one with anger), which is an awful lot of gray people who aren't actually corpses. And there's a major plot problem: our heroine, the gorgeous, brilliant, a ...more
Apr 14, 2014 Sarah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gave-up-on
Horribly disappointing. I loved the No Angel series and unfortunately this one was filled with unlikeable characters and unoriginal plotlines. I gave up after the pedophile episode (that was supposed to be romantic and sexy) around page 75. No thank you.
Brittany Johnson
Feb 18, 2016 Brittany Johnson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
For more reviews, please visit

As a Vincenzi fan, I know that I'm going to love any one of her books. They are all well-written, with delicious prose and characters that I can lose myself in. One of her major talents lies in never having supporting characters, but instead she writes a full cast of main characters. I never fail to get enthralled into the lives of all the characters, and this novel was no exception.

What sets this one apart for me is the impli
Susan Becraft
Aug 18, 2015 Susan Becraft rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pure entertainment

Cassia Fallon is an anomaly for her class and her time. Women do not graduate from medical school in England during the 1920s. And they certainly do not outperform their male counterparts. Rather than continuing her medical training, however, Cassia marries Edward, a sub-standard graduate. She forgoes her training to become a wife and mother, while Edward, unqualified to practice in a hospital, establishes a clinic in their home.

Most people do not inherit a half million pounds
Jan 09, 2009 Laura rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There's only one word for this book - WOW!

Harry is probably the best hero I've ever read in a book and you're cheering Cassie on all the way through.

Writing doesn't get much better than this.
Sep 24, 2012 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Superb! I bought this book about 6 years ago at the airport! Can't believe I left it so long to read. Set in the 1930's around the time of the Edward & Mrs Simpson scandal. Its wonderful. A real page turner.
Robin Nicholas
Jul 11, 2012 Robin Nicholas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Every time I read any of Penny Vincenzi's books I give them high ratings. I love her books, and this one did it for me too. Filled with interesting characters and entertaining story lines.
Jun 18, 2012 Tetty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't stop reading this book. Lots of different lives intertwined in the book over several years, the characters really drew me in and the storyline wasn't too predictable.
Mar 27, 2011 Sue rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
great read.... at times upset w/ behavior of main female character... however, a fine read... and plenty food for thought..
Dec 21, 2012 Laurel-Rain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A doctor's wife, Cassia is seemingly content with her husband and three children. But beneath the facade lies a life of unrealized potential and dreams. For once Cassia, too, aspired to be a doctor. But meeting Edward Tallow changed everything.

Was it the times in which she lived? Women were not necessarily pursuing careers or independent lives, especially if they married and had children. Finding role models for the life she had wanted were in short supply.

So, in many ways, it was not inconceiva
Katie Hanrahan
The films of the 1930s featured lavish sets, exquisite fashions and characters who were all rich. It was as if there was no economic depression, and people flocked to the cinemas to escape their less well-heeled reality.

To read WINDFALL is to visit that fantasy. The characters are wealthy, with enough emotional baggage to fill the cargo hold of one of the airplanes they are forever flying. The setting is England, at the time of the abdication in the 1930s, and you won't ever be allowed to forget
Dec 07, 2011 Sterlingcindysu rated it liked it
I had a hard time reading this book. It's a longer book and each time I re-opened it, I forgot who was mad at who, who knew secrets and what the family/friend relationships were. Thank goodness there's a little cheat sheet at the front, but when reference is made to someone attending a play and it turns out to be the cleaning lady and her husband, I was about ready to toss it in.

There were 2 stumbling blocks I couldn't shake. One was all the references made to how brillant Cassia was yet she ha
Mar 06, 2011 Rowena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
PV is a bit of a guilty pleasure for me. I love these rich English sagas peopled with impossibly spoiled and demanding characters. I like to briefly revel in their world of clean-cut butlers, Veuve Clicquot, silk dresses and dinner parties. Naturally, I finish a PV novel feeling a little sick, like I've consumed one too many decadent pieces of chocolate fudge cake. I could certainly never read one after the other, but she is the perfect vacation author.

I've noticed recently that this format of w
May 25, 2013 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars - it's not great literature, it's pretty predictable, but for the purpose I bought it it was perfect. A long, engrossing, not particularly challenging holiday read. Perfect for the kindle app on iPad - apparently it's 700 pages long???

It's very confusing at the beginning. Cassia, unhappily married and having shelved her training as a doctor, has a host of friends and family whose storylines we also follow. Having the list of characters at the beginning became very necessary for the firs
Michelle Stevenson
A book set in one of the most of turbulent years of British history and the plot for this book carries on in a similar rollercoaster fashion.

There are many characters and sub plots in this book, which initially takes a little time for the reader to get their head round. However, once you are able to immerse yourself into this 1930s drama, you find yourself swept away in the soap opera style shenanigans.

I really enjoyed this book, particularly with this authors style of writing and I would be inc
Jan 31, 2016 Hayley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Windfall was entertaining, but very flawed. I would recommend this to people who don't mind reading something that reads like a soap opera but are still in for the long haul. I might read it again someday, but I can't imagine it would be with any real urgency.
Martin Turnbull
This was my first Vincenzi and will probably be my last. Which isn’t to say that I didn’t enjoy it. The characters were expertly-drawn and rang true every step of the way. In fact, I found (to my surprise) that I missed them after I was finished. But I had to wade through the last 150 pages which is another way of saying I thought it was 150 pages too long. There were too much backstory and too much inner monologues, which is an odd thing for me to say because I generally like backstory. But the ...more
Susan Feaster
Aug 18, 2014 Susan Feaster rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was recommended to me by a friend, but I didn't make it beyond a couple of chapters before I gave up.
Meredith Morgan
Feb 03, 2015 Meredith Morgan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A good story about winning a lot of money and new choices and life changes
Laura G
Sep 21, 2014 Laura G rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Vincenzi's books are stories that you submerge yourself into. The pleasure is in following the different sets of characters' individual stories and getting to know them.

I really enjoyed this book. It took many unexpected turns.
Aug 10, 2014 Ellen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another reader summed the experience of this book up perfectly--it's like gorging yourself on a piece of rich, decadent cake. Unquestionably pleasurable and addicting, but leaves you feeling a bit sick afterwards. Vincenzi is a guilty pleasure of mine (although I have read at least one of her books that was utterly dismal) and this was the perfect summer beach read, although admittedly one I was happy to see end.
Aug 23, 2016 Judy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Penny Vincenzi's style of writing but she does get a little graphic with sexual scenes at times. An interesting story that reveals a side of society in the 1930's that I don't often read about.
Aug 14, 2015 Mona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Perfect - got nothing done the last 3 days while reading it.
Sandy Goodrick
Oct 05, 2016 Sandy Goodrick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Escapisim at it's best
Aug 27, 2013 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I got through this book in about three days. I was reluctant to start it, because I had never heard of Vincenzi and the print was so tiny and the book was so long. In the end, though, I ripped right through it! I can't say what I liked so much about it - the way it just drew you in, maybe, and brings this whole other world to life. I loved the characters, as well. There were no archetypes. Each person was complex, with both virtues and vices, just like in real life. There was intrigue, drama, ro ...more
Nov 08, 2014 Adrienne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Comfort read!
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 21, 2015 11:29AM  
  • Faith
  • Destinations
  • The Potter's House
  • Lovers and Liars
  • A Future Arrived (Passing Bells, #3)
  • The Hornbeam Tree
  • Tall Poppies
  • Heart of the Dreaming
  • Year of the Virgins
  • The Brass Dolphin
  • Rivals (Rutshire Chronicles #2)
  • By the Waters of Liverpool
  • London Noir
  • Sea of Lost Love
  • The Heretic’s Wife
I'm currently taking part in a Q&A Group here on Goodreads to discuss my latest novel, Sheer Abandon . To post questions, please visit: I look forward to an active discussion together.

I was nine years old when I embarked on my storytelling career. I wrote my own magazine called “Stories”, which I copied out three times on carbon paper and sold for two
More about Penny Vincenzi...

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