Henna House, Nomi Eve.
Review from jeannie zelos book reviews.
Well, I love books that give us a glimpse at the inner lives of other cultures. The everyday minutiae that is so important, the rules and constraints, and being a Jew and a girl Adela was subject to much of those. I love to see how different life can be and going back into history we get a glimpse of what seems like another way of life entirely. The pace is slower, the men rule, and they are broken down into religions and classes graduating in importance. The Jews are last in the line and as Adela’s family drops away she gets sucked into the seductive world of Henna. I love those Henna tattoos, they are so delicate and beautiful and the cover is enchanting, showing one at its best.
Much of the novel reads like beautiful sections of prose, lyrically written, descriptive in a way that sings to ones senses. Its a very different book from what I imagined it was going to be, and I did find it slow and difficult to get into at first, but once I’d adapted my mind set to the gentle pacing I enjoyed it. Its not one I’d re read, but was very enlightening and enriching about the lives and the problems facing the peoples of that time.
Its easy to be seduced, lulled into a position of complacency by the wonderful, descriptive passages, but underneath that surface there are dark elements of cruelty, showing just how little value some peoples lives were regarded as. I guess that’s always been the position, we like to think of ourselves as having passed that state, and yet even here in the West nearly a century on we have people working for minimum wages, on zero hours contracts, homeless and unable to get a home, sick and unable to afford treatment, while others who are wealthy know nothing of these problems…what price progress?
Stars: Four, an enticing read.
ARC supplied via Netgalley
Edit: i didn’t have price info when i wrote this – now I can see it’s almost ten quid, seriously expensive IMO!
When I Fall, Tamara Morgan
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Second in the Montgomery Manor series, though I haven’t read book one. I thought this sounded a fun read, and it was but….it was a bit “middle of the road”, lots of happy but not much on the downside, and regular readers of my reviews will know by now that I want to wallow in the grief, feel that the characters are really upset, before I get to the happy ending. Here I didn’t feel that, there was a bit of a hiccup but that all.
Becca was more than her socialite, drunken, flighty appearance suggested, and still grieving deeply at the death of her friend. She’s a shame to her family, a blight on the name with her constant press appearances, and yet when we get to see her, to know her, we see its not all her fault…Then there’s Jake, seems like a rich playboy, never doing anything much other than gambling and spending money. He’s at a loose end as his family have frozen his accounts. By chance he teams up with Becca and pretends to be her fiance to stop her family from sending her to rehab once again. He knows – as he was there – that the recent incident wasn’t her fault, and rehab won’t help her but hinder her recovery from grief. She’s not the drug addled person her family seem to think she is. He needs somewhere to stay so it works for him too. Then things get moved along quickly, and before they know it the families are arranging an engagement party. Jakes fallen for Becca, but he’s having trouble getting her to let go and trust in him.
It’s afun read, light and frothy but somehow I never really felt there was much depth to the story. If you want a light, easy, well written read this will work, but for me I need a bit more.
Stars: three, a decent read but light on drama and emotion for me.
ARC supplied via Netgalley and publishers.