The Sapphire Widow by Dinah Jefferies book review

the sapphire widow

The Sapphire Widow written by Dinah Jefferies, publisher Viking (an imprint of Penguin) is available in ebook, paperback and audiobook format from 5th April 2018.

To pre-order/buy link:  https://goo.gl/eeQDK2

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Ceylon, 1935. Louisa Reeve, the daughter of a successful British gem trader, and her husband Elliot, a charming, thrill-seeking businessman, seem like the couple who have it all. Except what they long for more than anything: a child.
While Louisa struggles with miscarriages, Elliot is increasingly absent, spending much of his time at a nearby cinnamon plantation, overlooking the Indian ocean. After his sudden death, Louisa is left alone to solve the mystery he left behind. Revisiting the plantation at Cinnamon Hills, she finds herself unexpectedly drawn towards the owner Leo, a rugged outdoors man with a chequered past. The plantation casts a spell, but all is not as it seems. And when Elliot’s shocking betrayal is revealed, Louisa has only Leo to turn to…

sapphire

I voluntarily reviewed an arc of  this book.  All opinions are my own and no content may be copied.  However, authors and publishers may use elements of my reviews for quotes.

This was such a captivating story by Dinah Jefferies who has once again taken the reader to another culture and another time.  This story takes us travelling back in time to 1935 and the city of Galle, Ceylon, south-west Sri Lanka.  With Dinah Jefferies words describing the vivid colours, sounds and aromas you can visualise the cinnamon plantations, the streets in and around Galle and the serenity of the coastal area.

Louisa and Elliot Reeve have been married for 12 years living and working in Galle with such lush surroundings.  Their marriage has weathered a few storms experiencing much sadness but the prospects of starting a new joint venture of a jewellery and fine goods emporium is giving the couple a much needed boost. However, life was to throw more anguish in Louisa’s way that crushes her heart.  The days following this tragedy opens up many more wounds for Louisa and she soon starts to realise did she ever know what her husband was really like?

Louisa had led a fairly charmed existence growing up in an affluent family however, sadness in her past has given her a strength and empathy to cope with what lies ahead.  My heart ached for all the turmoil Louisa had accrued and I could totally understand why she didn’t know anything about the events that had unfolded.  Louisa’s husband Elliot had many business interests and it was common during this era that wives were not often involved in the day to day functions of business.  Louisa’s strength through adversity was admiral and seeing through the fog of turmoil she could compartmentalise her own emotions to help those in need.  She didn’t let prejudices thwart her actions.  Life had to go on and light would eventually shine through bringing, hope, belief and love.

A stunning, evocative story coping with grief, deceit, emotional turmoil and fresh starts.

To learn more about the author please do visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.dinahjefferies.com/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/DinahJefferies

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/dinahjefferiesbooks/

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All the Good Things by Clare Fisher book review

all the good things

All the Good Things written by Clare Fisher, publisher Viking, is available in ebook, hardcover and audio download format from 1st June 2017.

To pre-order/buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Twenty-one year old Beth is in prison. The thing she did is so bad she doesn’t deserve ever to feel good again.
But her counsellor, Erika, won’t give up on her. She asks Beth to make a list of all the good things in her life. So Beth starts to write down her story, from sharing silences with Foster Dad No. 1, to flirting in the Odeon on Orange Wednesdays, to the very first time she sniffed her baby’s head.
But at the end of her story, Beth must confront the bad thing.
What is the truth hiding behind her crime? And does anyone – even a 100% bad person – deserve a chance to be good?

notepad and pencil

Wow!  This book, this story, was so moving and so profound, it nearly broke me, to think that this could be the life of many, many young vulnerable people that get overlooked in society it’s heart breaking to comprehend.  Society’s initial thoughts are you are bad so there is no good but if you take a closer look in all the nooks and crannies you can see the good trying with all it’s might to break free from the bad; like the sun breaking away from the clouds.

This story of a young woman in prison for, in her words, doing something bad.  She has weekly visits from her counsellor who encourages her to look at her life and write a list of all the good things in her life.  Beth doubts that she had any good times but when she does put pen to paper there were wonderful, poignant times that once Beth remembered they brought a clarity back to her life.  A life that was now looking a little brighter but the longer the list grew the closer Beth got to opening up and reliving her bad thing.

A very moving, insightful story that was full of real life raw emotions, there was no sugar coating around the edges of life’s turbulent at times bumps in the road.  A wonderful, inspiring debut that I feel should be read by all that have any involvement with young people.  The words from this book will stay with me for a long time … 5/5*

I’d like to share a quote from the book that I particularly found moving …

It’s only now, two years and all these words later, that I see: having a difficult story is not necessarily bad.

To find out more about Clare Fisher please visit the following pages:

Website:  https://clarefisherwriter.com/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/claresitafisher

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/ClareFisherWriter/