Red winter is the Russian revolution seen through the eyes of a young woman; Sophie. Privileged and of Russian and English descent her life is to be changed forever. We see her growing from a naive teenager, head over heels in love with Tolya, an idealistic and serious man, into a rather formidable woman. She is not afraid to make difficult choices and rather heroic when it comes to her husband and family. The historical details are well researched and form an excellent setting to this story, but it never becomes a history lesson; it’s all about how the events of the time impact on Sophie and her family. Very well captured is the changing relationship between Sophie and her former servants. I enjoyed this well written epic of love, war, revolution and above all survival.
Monday, 29 July 2019
I rather like this author as she just shown me that she can write about a range of topics, but easily captivates the reader with her very readable style. The first book I read by this author was about a heist set in seventies Britain, this one is set in Russia during the revolution. I gave this 5 stars. Click on the picture to take you to Amazon.
Sunday, 14 July 2019
Where do you go to: The rags to riches tale inspired by the epic Peter Sarstedt song by Jean Cerfontaine
I picked this book for two reasons. A I thought it was an interesting idea to base a book on a song lyric. B. One of the locations mentioned in the song is Juan les pins. As this is only a few miles from here I wanted to read what the author had to say about my area. We get a nice snapshot of 1950's and 60's Europe and some well known names like Picasso and Yves Montand are woven into the story. I gave it 4 stars as it is hard to emphasise with a character who's life is just so fabulous.
Basing a book on a well-known Peter Sarstedt song was an interesting idea. Time and time you are reminded of the song when Marie-Claire does something or goes somewhere. It builds a familiarity with the character that we wouldn’t otherwise have. After troubled and murky beginnings the young orphan Marie-Claire is adopted by the Le Blancs and starts a new life. And what a charmed life it is. Growing up in the plush surroundings of the French embassy of Rome and then Athens and Moscow, Marie-Claire takes to her new life like a duck to water. As we see her blossom into a young talented woman the action moves to Paris and we get a taste of the early sixties and how the rich and famous lived. The story gets a little repetitive as Marie-Claire’s life seems to be an endless string of parties and holidays. Her past is the intriguing part that hangs over the story like a dark cloud, and although it is resolved in an original way, I think the writer could have done more with it. Well written and a nice snapshot of 50’s and 60’s Europe.