Wednesday 20 May 2020

Where the Crawdads Sing
Delia Owens

For years, rumors of the 'Marsh Girl' have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.

When Kya's mother walks away from the family home and her drunken father disappears for weeks on end, Kya is forced at a very young age to look after herself in the marshes of North Carolina. Although the Marshes are all she has ever known, it can still be a very scary place when you are left on your own.

Kya is forever hiding from people who could possibly do her harm in the marshes and even more so, she is trying to avoid the truant officer, but one day her luck runs out and she is forced to attend school.

When Kya arrives at school she feels just as lonely as she does in the swamps and when the other kids make fun of her, including Chase Andrews, she decides school isn't for her and after only one day, she doesn't go back.

Whilst riding through the many swamps in her run down old boat, Kya often sees a boy who waves at her and after a while they become unlikely friends. Tate has the same interests in Kya, birds, seashells, and nature in general. They form a friendship that Kya is desperate for and Tate is in awe of her knowledge of the local swamps.

Will Kya find the happy ending and family that she so craves? or will everyone she meets leave her like her family did?

When I bought a copy of this book the lady behind the counter said it is a story that will stay with me for a long time and she was right. I loved it and it is so well written and descriptive that I cannot wait for it to be turned into a film (watch this space!).

I know this book will be a bit like Marmite, you will either love it or hate it, but I am so glad that I read it and it is one of my top 10 reads of all time.

To order a copy of this book click here

Saturday 16 May 2020

People Like Us
Louise Fein
As soon as I read the blurb about this book, I just knew it was going to be my cup of tea! I loved it and you can read my review below. If you love books like The Tattooist of Auschwitz, then you will love this heart-wrenching read.

About the book

Leipzig, 1930's Germany.

Hetty Heinrich is a young girl growing up under Nazi rule. With an SS officer father, a brother in the Luftwaffe and a member of the BDM, Hetty is the epitome of a perfect German child.
But Walter changes everything. Blond haired, blue-eyed, perfect in every way Walter. The boy who saved her life. A Jew.
As she falls more and more in love with a man who is against all she has been taught, Hetty begins to question everything. Will the steady march of dark forces destroy their world, or can love ultimately triumph?
Perfect for fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Book Thief and Kate Furnivall.

Hetty is the daughter of an SS Officer and lives in a big house with her parents and her brother Karl. She has heard rumours about how they got to live in the house, but she believes her father (Vati) is a very important man and it came with his job. Little did she know, that a jewish family had to give up the right to live their just because of their faith.

Whilst playing in a lake when she was young, Hetty is saved by Walter who she knows she will be eternally grateful to. She develops a crush on him, with his blond hair and blue eyes and at the very least, wants to be friends with him, but when his family is sent away she doesn't understand why, because surely he can't be a jew?

Meanwhile Tomas has feelings for Hetty, but will his intentions be honourable?

This is a fabulous story of love, loss, friendship, loyalty and so many other feelings and I truly loved it. I really don't want to give too much away of the storyline as I think you need to read it for yourself to catch the atmosphere of the era.

A wonderfully researched book which had characters you will love and hate at the same time! I wouldn't hesitate to read another book by this author.

About the author

Louise Fein holds an MA in Creative Writing from St Mary’s University. Prior to studying for her master’s, she ran a commodity consultancy business following a career in banking and law. She lives in Surrey with her family. People Like Us is inspired by her family history, and by the alarming parallels she sees between the early 30s and today.

Follow Louise:  
Facebook: @LouiseFeinAuthor
Twitter: @FeinLouise

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