Once again, when you think you know the answer, you don't!! This Robert Goddard is a wonderful writer. His stories are all different, take place in different time periods, and he is the ultimate master of the the story twist.
I just finished reading Painting the Darkness by Robert Goddard. It's bit of an involved plot, but I'll try to explain it. One mild autumn day in 1882, William Trenchard sits smoking his pipe in his family home. When a stranger approaches him, he is puzzled but not overly worried. Trenchard cannot know what havoc will be wrought on his life and all he holds dear.
The stranger announces he is James Norton - but is, in reality Sir James Davenell - former fiance of Trenchard's wife, Constance. He disappeared 11 years ago and was declared a suicide. Now he's back to claim his inheritance and Constance. Sir Hugo, James' brother, and his mother Lady Catherine, are convinced that James Norton is an imposter and force Trenchard - who fears the loss of his wife - into an uneasy alliance against him. But Trenchard must plumb the depths of his despair before he can uncover the shocking secrets of the Davenell family.
I thought this book was really well-written, although the plot was very convoluted it was very good. I give this story an A!
On a lovely autumn afternoon in 1882, William Trenchard sits smoking his pipe in St. John's Wood. When the creak of the garden gate heralds the arrival of an unexpected visitor, he is puzzled but not alarmed. He cannot yet know the havoc and destruction this handsome stranger will wreak on all he holds dear.
The stranger announces himself as James Norton, but claims he is in reality Sir James Davenall--who ostensibly died by his own hand eleven years before, a man to whom Trenchard's wife, Constance, had been engaged to be married. Now he has returned to London, determined to repossess his inheritance and all that goes with it.