After diving deeper into the world of twitter recently, I’ve become quite connected with some of the most selfless and compassionate bloggers. Especially those who continue to share their enthusiasm about different kind of books. For example, I’ve been so lucky to have a chance to grow an amazing friendship with Shan, also known as littleirishbookcat. She’s definitely highlighted the world of incredible novels to me and I’m finding myself reading more than I ever used to! What some of you may not know about me, is that I’ve always read books since I was a young little kiddy wink. I’m not a very outgoing person and so having the ability to grab a book, cuddle up in bed and be transported into another world, away from the stressful one I may currently be in is much needed at times. I decided today was the day, where I would take my blog to a whole other realm and review one book in particular that has shaped who I am today! Grab yourself a cuppa, put your feet up and enjoy!
Malaya, 1955. Lydia Cartwright returns from visiting a sick friend to an empty house. The servants are gone. The phone is dead. Where is her husband, Alec? Her young daughters, Emma and Fleur? Fearful and desperate, she contacts the British district officer and learns that Alec has been posted up-country. But why didn’t he wait? Why did he leave no message? Lydia’s search takes her on a hazardous journey through war-torn jungle. Forced to turn to Jack Harding, a man she vowed to leave in her past, she sacrifices everything to be reunited with her family. And while carrying her own secrets, Lydia will soon face a devastating betrayal which may be more than she can bear…
It doesn’t go without say that Dinah Jefferies has created some powerful, action packed and heart throbbing stories, over the course of her writing career. When her son Jamie was fourteen he was killed in an accident at school and the experience went on after many years to form part of the inspiration for her 2013 work The Separation. She believes in involving many of her life tales and triumphs in her stories which end up creating some powerful voices for those who have lost theirs along the way.
Where do I begin? from the minute my eyes read the first word, I have been mesmerised by how the author straight away hooks the reader’s heart and doesn’t let go until you’ve read through at least a few chapters. Lydia definitely represents parts of myself, the way she continues to grab any upcoming battles by the horns and ride ’em, like they’ve never been ridden before. And, although there are times she gets thrown off into a wall of sorrow, it’s not too long before she’s met with moments of joy and continues her pathway of hope. (Aka, her perplex ex lover Jack!) This stubbornness and determination of Lydia’s is most definitely shown within her two daughters personality’s, especially Emma who continues to face new triumphs and disasters every waking moment, alone in her own mind unable to seek the much needed attention from her Father at times of desperation. Which is the opposite to the attention younger sister, Fleur receives from her ‘loving’ father.
Through some of Lydia’s and Emma’s adventures, Dinah continues to show that this was a period of time where women were dismissed of their own thoughts and opinions, instead they were made to follow the rules and actions of the men in their lives whether they enjoyed their company, or found it to be frightening and fearsome. There were only two results in these gruelling experiences, they’d either have to close their eyes and jump, or forever suffer in silence.
If you’re someone who is fascinated with the women who depart from one lover, to the other without leaving an abrupt ending behind. Then you will be hooked on the love life of Lydia. I honestly couldn’t keep up at times, and although I’ve finished the book I still wonder.. who? Who was her real love, and did she ever truly love Alec in the first place. Or did she just stay with him all those years to maintain a steady, functional family relationship, for her children’s happiness and not hers? I don’t think I’ll ever know!
For somebody who continues to fight the battle that is mental health, I have grown to connect with most of the characters involved in the book. Especially Emma, who struggles to find her true identity behind her father’s already driven one for her. Not being able to understand your true self, is one of the most heart-wrenching experiences to go through. And having someone, even if it’s a character in a book understand is much need closure on a hard day.
Overall, I would most definitely recommend this book to anyone out there. Especially to those who feel that the journey ahead is never ending and that there are always new hurdles to get over before the light at the end of the tunnel is even slightly visible. This is already one of my most favourite books read, and I’m certain it will be for a long time! It’s definitely taught me some life strengths, that I’ll hopefully begin to use in the near future.
Let me know if you have ever read one of Dinah Jefferie’s books? – What did you think of it?
Until next time lovelies! xo