Felt a little forced for a William Boyd novel. The plot, involving a female architect in Los Angeles in the 1930s, and flashbacks to the Philipino-American war at the turn of the century, is fairly convoluted. The two strands don't really come together. Even the beautiful writing in this feels planned out in advance, as though Boyd set out to write a book with a large dramatic sweep. I'm making this sound like an utter failure and it wasn't really: just not his best.