An unputdownable story of a woman in search of the truth, the man she falls in love with, and the devastation of the Second World War.
1934, Guyana. All her life, Mary Grace has wanted to know the truth about who her parents really are. As the mixed-race daughter of two white plantation owners, her childhood has been clouded by whispered rumours, and the circumstances of her birth have been kept a closely guarded secret…
Aunt Winnie is the only person Mary Grace can confide in. Feeling lost and lonely, her place in society uncertain, Mary Grace decides to forge her own path in the world. And she finds herself unexpectedly falling for charming and affluent Jock Campbell, a planter with revolutionary ideas.
But, with the onset of the Second World War, their lives will be changed forever. And Mary Grace and Jock will be faced with the hardest decision of all – to fight for freedom or to follow their hearts…
This was a book I hadn’t really expected to enjoy as much as I did. I rarely read historical fiction these days, I’m more likely to read a non fiction account of any historical period I’m interested in these days but I very quickly fell in love with this beautifully written book and couldn’t wait to get back to reading it if I put it down.
It’s a gripping, evocative and poignant story of a young girl’s difficult transition into womanhood amidst a time of turmoil in
British Guyana (known colloquially as BG or BeeGee) a former British colony in the British West Indies in the Caribbean now an independent Guyana.
Grace is the young musically gifted daughter of a plantation owner, a widow who is known for her harsh treatment of her sugar plantation workers. There are mysteries surrounding Grace’s true parentage that take a while to unravel throughout the book.
Grace’s story is one of courage and strength as she tries to be a dutiful daughter but falls in love with someone who isn’t exactly the husband her mother had in mind for her.
The book is rich in historical detail and throughout the book the changing times of the colony, once part of Britain’s shameful colonial past are a backdrop to the story and I learned much that I hadn’t known before.
The middle section of the book did go a little fluffy with romantic meetings but once that was over it was soon back to the realities of this engrossing read.
I was surprised to read that this is the final book in a trilogy because it works very well as a standalone.
There’s a truly astonishing bit of history revealed right at the end that took me completely by surprise and I had absolutely no idea about.
About The Author
Sharon Maas was born in Georgetown, Guyana in 1951, and spent many childhood hours either curled up behind a novel or writing her own adventure stories. Sometimes she had adventures of her own, and found fifteen minutes of Guyanese fame for salvaging an old horse-drawn coach from a funeral parlor, fixing it up, painting it bright blue, and tearing around Georgetown with all her teenage friends. The coach ended up in a ditch, but thankfully neither teens nor horse were injured.
Boarding school in England tamed her somewhat; but after a few years as a reporter with the Guyana Graphic in Georgetown she plunged off to discover South America by the seat of her pants. She ended up in a Colombian jail, and that’s a story for another day…
Sharon has lived in an Ashram in India and as a German Hausfrau–the latter giving her the time and the motivation to finally start writing seriously. Her first novel, Of Marriageable Age, was published by HarperCollins, London, in 1999 and reprinted as a digital edition in 2014. After working as a social worker in a German hospital she finally retired and now has time for her favourite pastimes: reading, writing, and travelling.
The rest of the #BlogBlitz team