Category: Other 5 out of 5s

Ailish Sinclair’s—The mermaid and the bear ***** and Fireflies and chocolate*****

Ailish Sinclair’s—The mermaid and the bear ***** and Fireflies and chocolate*****

In 15th century England, Isobell escapes before she is forced into a marriage with Richard—a cruel and nasty friend of her sadistic older brother. She sets sail with her twin brother, Jasper and Ian and head north to Scotland. In a Scottish castle she finds refuge as a kitchen maid helping Bessie. But Agnes who takes care of the Laird’s son, is full of malice, and Richard and her older brother head north in search of Isobell. Can she survive Agnes’s acid tongue and Richard’s determination to claim his prize in an era of witch hunts?

Continue reading “Ailish Sinclair’s—The mermaid and the bear ***** and Fireflies and chocolate*****”
Daphne Kalotay — Russian winter *****

Daphne Kalotay — Russian winter *****

Nina was a Russian ballerina who manages to escape Stalin’s dangerous regime after her artistic friends become victims. In Boston, she buries her past until she decides to sell her jewellery collection. But when an associate from the auction house and a professor of Russian delve into the unique jewellery, they unravel a mystery that changes all their lives.

Lissa Evans’—Crooked heart *****

Lissa Evans’—Crooked heart *****

You might think this is yet another novel set in England during World War 11 and read no further. But don’t be fooled. This is a tale like no other I’ve read before, full of humour with an odd and dubious list of characters.

Ten-year-old Noel lives with his aging godmother until she dies, when he’s sent as an evacuee outside of London. There he’s paired with Vee, a single mother who is struggling to keep a roof over her head for herself, her helpless mother, and useless son, Donald. Nineteen-year-old Donald has a heart condition and can’t join up, but soon discovers an illegal way to make large sums of cash that he doesn’t share with his mother. Vee keeps failing at schemes to make money until she realizes that Noel isn’t the empty headed child she though he was. This well written novel is full of tongue-in-cheek laughs. 

Isabel Allende’s —Island Beneath the Sea *****

Isabel Allende’s —Island Beneath the Sea *****

On Valmorain’s arrival from France, he finds he is responsible for the sugar cane plantation on the island of Saint-Domingue at his father’s death.He purchases nine-year-old Tété who soon learns to manage his house. In her teenage years, he rapes her and uses her as his concubine. When he removes their first-born child, Tété’s life couldn’t be worse. With a slave rebellion in site, Tété’s moves Valmorain’s son from his first wife to New Orleans.

This historical fiction set in Haiti during the slave trading era held a mixture of points of view: from plantation owners to the slaves who practised voodoo and tried to maintain their African roots.