Chateau Laux

A Story of Colonial America

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
292 Pages
Reviewed on 10/25/2021
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Author Biography

David Loux is a short story writer who has published under pseudonym and served as past board member of California Poets in the Schools. Chateau Laux is his first novel. He lives in the Eastern Sierra with his wife, Lynn.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite

In David Loux’s immersive historical novel, Chateau Laux, the fate of a young family is changed by a heinous crime that leaves a trail of far-reaching and devastating results. It is the early 1700s and Lawrence Kraymer is one of Philadelphia’s successful merchants after inheriting his grandfather’s prosperous brewery. Craving a break from years of toiling alongside his grandfather, he plans a hunting trip. While lost in the woods, he stumbles upon a farmhouse whose hospitable owner, Pierre, gives him a warm welcome. Lawrence becomes enchanted by his host’s oldest daughter, Catharine. To please her and her father, he commissions the construction of a magnificent château. Though its construction is well-intended, it becomes the scene of an unspeakable crime.

When reading Chateau Laux by David Loux, the events felt more convincing since the novel is based on a real and documented historical event. I also appreciated the depth of the story which is achieved by including bits of French history. The riveting historical detail is creatively woven into Pierre’s background and paints a picture of the bitter political division in France at the time. Symbolism is also used to enhance the story such as when the château is used as an ominous sign from Pierre’s past. Loux’s storytelling is elegant and lyrical. The characters display recognizable human nature from their conversations and behavior. There are also profound lessons to be learned along the way from the main characters’ experiences and Pierre’s wisdom. Chateau Laux portrays its historical settings and characters with skill and excellence. The story is well-developed and all its elements are skillfully achieved. I highly recommend it.

Grant Leishman

Chateau Laux by David Loux is a historical fiction novel based on an actual event in Pennsylvania. Pierre Loux, a young boy, escaped southern France in the early eighteenth century as Catholic forces from the north sought to stamp out the rising Protestant tide in the south of the country. Pierre’s family were aristocrats with land and titles but the family were Protestant and Pierre’s mother was also an adherent to the strange sect of Catharism. Things were always likely to be politically unstable for the Loux family in southern France. Escaping to the new world of Pennsylvania, Pierre Loux set about building himself a new life farming on the very fringes of civilization in America.

Chateau Laux is a sweeping historical novel that transports the reader to the height of religious oppression and bigotry in Europe in the eighteenth century and across the seas to the burgeoning, seeming freedom of the New World: the bustling colony of Philadelphia. Author David Loux seamlessly brings his own family history into this story of the birth and growth of a new nation. For a debut novel, the author has done an amazing job of setting the scene for the tragic events that unfolded against the backdrop of the new civilization. The author’s descriptive writing style and poignant inner thoughts of the main protagonists bring alive the depth and breadth of the difficulties faced in the hinterland as a new country was being forged. I particularly enjoyed the inner reflections of Pierre and Lawrence, as both approached this tough, unforgiving land with different perspectives and attitudes. I was most impressed that the author didn’t neglect the character development of other members of Pierre’s family, and one was left with a real feeling of knowing intimately this tough, pioneering family. I thoroughly enjoyed Chateau Laux and can highly recommend it.

Susan Sewell

A wealthy young entrepreneur leaves the city to build his life in a colonial Pennsylvania village in the thrilling historical era novel Chateau Laux by David Loux. Raised by his grandfather, Lawrence Kraymer's childhood was dark and lonely. After his grandfather's death, Lawrence became a wealthy man. When he chanced upon the Laux family during a thunderstorm, Lawrence fell in love with the oldest daughter, Catharine. Enchanted by Pierre's French heritage, Lawrence begins building a chateau in the Pennsylvania wilderness. Using the lumber and wood from the area, Lawrence starts a quarry and wood mill. He hires local people to run them, including two of Catharine's brothers, Jean and Andrew. While construction is ongoing, Jean and Catharine notice one of Lawrence's employees has an unsettling dark aura surrounding him. Lawrence brushes their concerns aside. Upon the house's construction, Lawrence and Catharine are married, and a year later, they are expecting their first child. Lawrence's dream of a happy home has come true. Or has it?

Set against the dramatic backdrop of the colonial wilderness, Chateau Laux by David Loux is a dramatic story fraught with intense suspense. Based on actual people and events, this gripping novel held me on the edge of my seat from the first page until the last. The characters are well-defined, genuine, and likable, making it easy to relate to them and their era. Caught up in the stunning story, I couldn't put the book down for anything, not even dinner. It is an extraordinary book, and I recommend it to everyone who loves stories filled with action, drama, and love.

Pikasho Deka

Chateau Laux is a historical fiction drama novel written by David Loux. It's the year 1710. Lawrence Kraymer, a Philadelphia brewery owner, embarks upon a hunting trip with his loyal associate, John, when he meets Pierre Laux, a French aristocrat who has been living in the outskirts of the wilderness as a humble farmer. While enjoying shelter at the Laux household, Lawrence becomes enamored with Pierre's beautiful daughter, Catharine. Eager to impress the Laux family, Lawrence starts on the task of building a chateau within the vicinity of the Laux family and takes Pierre's sons, Jean and Andrew, into his service. However, things fall apart as Lawrence witnesses his life crumbling before his eyes. Can he get back up and make peace with himself and the Laux family?

A tragic tale of grief, loss, and redemption, Chateau Laux follows the lives of a group of characters intrinsically linked by fate. Author David Loux tells an engaging story based on true events, seamlessly incorporating actual historical events and personages to weave a gripping plot that keeps you engaged throughout the pages. This is a character-driven story and, as such, the narrative is deliberately slow. The characters have well-developed personalities, with distinct motives and complex layers that make for lots of conflicts, thereby providing plenty of dramatic moments. I found Lawrence and Pierre's relationship particularly captivating. Although I enjoyed them all, Jean, Pierre, and Lawrence were my personal favorites of the bunch. If you're itching for a well-written historical fiction novel based on real events, Chataeu Laux is the book for you.

Jennifer Ibiam

Lawrence Kraymer was a successful twenty-two-year-old merchant who lived in the early 1700s. He inherited a brewery business from his grandfather and had other trades. But Lawrence felt haunted by the memories of his past and sought some time alone. Off to the woods in Watertown, he went away with his friend, John, for some solitude. Lawrence got lost on his way back home and sought shelter at the Laux family’s farm. When he set his eyes on their daughter, Catharine, it was love at first sight for the duo, and he wanted to impress her father. Lawrence set out building a magnificent chateau. He would move from Philadelphia and live in it with Catharine after the wedding. Will this move bring him joy or become his undoing? Read Chateau Laux by David Loux for the fascinating details.

Chateau Laux by David Loux is a thought-provoking historical novel that everyone will love. It bordered on love, grief, betrayal, loyalty, compassion, survival, and guts. The plot was brilliant and refreshing, while the story was unusual yet unique. Based on real-life events, David built formidable characters that gave life to the story. I took away valuable lessons from this novel that will stick with me forever. Lawrence judged McDonall at face value, and he paid dearly for it. Sometimes, we can’t see what others do, but we must pay heed and be sensitive. Also, many good people still walk the earth, offering us help at different points in our lives, even as strangers. We are never truly alone. I loved this novel, and the flawless editing influenced my beautiful reading experience.