The Silk Merchant’s Daughter by Dinah Jefferies book review

the silk merchants daughter

The Silk Merchant’s Daughter by Dinah Jefferies, publisher Penguin is available from THURSDAY 25th February 2016 in ebook, hardcover and audio download format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)


Dinah Jefferies’ stunning new novel is a gripping, unforgettable tale of a woman torn between two worlds…

1952, French Indochina. Since her mother’s death, eighteen-year-old half-French, half-Vietnamese Nicole has been living in the shadow of her beautiful older sister, Sylvie. When Sylvie is handed control of the family silk business, Nicole is given an abandoned silk shop in the Vietnamese quarter of Hanoi. But the area is teeming with militant rebels who want to end French rule, by any means possible. For the first time, Nicole is awakened to the corruption of colonial rule – and her own family’s involvement shocks her to the core…

Tran, a notorious Vietnamese insurgent, seems to offer the perfect escape from her troubles, while Mark, a charming American trader, is the man she’s always dreamed of. But who can she trust in this world where no one is what they seem?

The Silk Merchant’s Daughter is a captivating tale of dark secrets, sisterly rivalry and love against the odds, enchantingly set in colonial era Vietnam.

vietmanese flowers

I’d like to thank the publishers and Dinah Jefferies for an arc in return for an honest review.

I utterly adored this story.  I was gripped with the intense drama and of the desperation of survival of the heart and soul.  This was  a beautiful, touching, at times harrowing and tragic story.  A story of survival.  A story of defending your heritage.  A story of love.

18 year old Nicole, daughter of a Vietnamese mother and French father, was struggling with her identity.  She admired her beautiful, older sister who oozed French chic.  Nicole had more of her mother’s looks and being half French faced much racism living in French Indochina in 1952.  War was imminent, Vietnamese rebels wanted to end French rule.  Nicole and her family living in the wealthy French quarter were soon caught up in a dangerous life of survival.  During these tentative times Nicole had become friends with an American who was working with her father.  Nicole soon started to have strong feelings for Mark but didn’t know an awful lot about him.

Nicole witnesses a truly awful event to which her father, her sister and Mark were involved.  She is utterly disgusted with this terrible event she has witnessed and her whole outlook on her life and loved ones has been shaken.  She doesn’t know who to trust or who to turn to.

Tran, a Vietnamese revolutionary offers her an escape from her insecurities. However, the journey she takes with Tran is full of danger she didn’t expect and Nicole fears for her life and wonders whether she will see her family and Mark again.

I was totally gripped with this story.  I felt the fear of impending uncertainty of the war from Nicole.  I felt her anxiety and confusion of not knowing which side she belonged to: French or Vietnamese.  I also felt her heartache for the love she thought would not blossom and grow.  A beautiful love story set amongst a country full of so much unrest.  Can love survive the battles ahead for Nicole?  Once again Dinah drew you into the story and the country with it’s beauty.  Amongst the devastated landscapes the beauty of the colours of the flora and fauna could not be hidden.  I could almost picture the markets with its array of colours of the spices which radiated the most delicious, warming aromas.

I was gripped with the intensity of the drama were love had to battle with a country’s unrest.  5/5*

To find out more about Dinah Jefferies and her books please visit the following links:



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