Thursday, 12 December 2019

The Pearl of Penang by Clare Flynn

Reviewer: Liza Perrat, author of the French Historical, The Bone Angel trilogy (Spirit of Lost Angels, Wolfsangel, Blood Rose Angel) and Australian 1970s series: The Silent Kookaburra and The Swooping Magpie.

What we thought: I thoroughly enjoyed being swept back to the heat, the tropical landscape, the culture and people of Malaya prior to, and during, WWII, in Clare Flynn’s The Pearl of Penang. 

I especially loved how the author wove together an engaging story with well-researched details about Malaya and its rubber plantations.

I found myself fighting for our heroine, Evie every step of the way of her journey, from the beginning when we meet her as a quiet young girl working as rich woman’s companion, through her acceptance of a marriage proposal from a Malay rubber plantation-owner she’d only met once, years ago. 

I was by Evie’s side as she lived through the tragedies and triumphs of her marriage to the cold and unloving, Douglas Barrington, as she endures the often spiteful and cruel British expatriates, and the shallow ex-pat life. I feared for her as the threat of Japanese occupation of Malay became a reality.

With its gripping storyline, very real characters, and easy-to-read prose, I would highly recommend The Pearl of Penang as a novel to lose yourself in.

You’ll like this if you: enjoy plucky heroines and ex-pat tales set in exotic places.

Avoid if you don’t like: male-dominated worlds, oppression of women.

Genre: historical fiction.

Buy the book here

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