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The Other Side of Paradise [Paperback]

Noel Barber
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

3 Aug 1995 Coronet Books
When pioneering doctor Kit Masters is forced to flee England, he makes a new start on the South Sea island of Koraloona. Enchanted by the island and its people, Kit falls in love with the daughter of the island princess, and dreams of building a hospital. But all is under threat as war approaches.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 768 pages
  • Publisher: Coronet; New edition edition (3 Aug 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340415533
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340415535
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 17.9 x 3.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 560,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Noel Barber has enchanted millions of readers with his six bestselling novels. In these powerfully exotic novels he drew upon his own experience as one of the leading foreign correspondents from the 40s to the 60s working on the Daily Mail. He was the first Briton to reach the South Pole since Scott, was stabbed five times while covering the wars in Morocco and was shot during the Hungarian uprising. He died in 1988.

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Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An unmissable, unputdownable read! 14 Jan 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I have read this book twice now and on both occasions it had me gripped until the end. The book tells the story of Dr Kit Masters, a young doctor with a desire to cure polio, who gets the opportunity to practice in paradise; a beautiful South Seas island. The book is set during the First World War and the atomic bomb testing in Bikini island and tells the tale of the doctor's integration into the island community and his attempts to protect the island from disease and the effects of the war. It also tells the story of his love affair with the island's princess. The best thing about this book is that it is one of the few novels that makes you feel you are really there. The descriptions are vivid and exciting without being overly detailed and the plot is fast moving. This is the perfect 'holiday book' - make sure you have lots of free time on your hands before picking it up as you're going to be very unsociable until you've finished it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The other side of paradise 19 Feb 2011
By OC
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Kit Masters is a young doctor in 1937. He has a fight with a fascist black shirt, and is forced to flee for the world he knew.

When Kit arrives on the south seas island of Koraloona he becomes enchanted with the place, and dreams of spending his life there, raising a family with the beautiful Aleena, and building a hospital with the colourful character of Doctor Reid.

Kit's plans all start to fall apart as war threatens to engulf not just his new home, but the whole world.
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4.0 out of 5 stars absorbing, exciting read 9 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Reminiscent of James Michener, this book is an entertaining adventure story about life on a remote and fictional island in the South Pacific narrated as memoirs of the main character, Kit Masters. The story begins in the thirties and takes the island and its inhabitants, both native and expats who have come from far corners of the world, through war, epidemics, feuds, and natural disasters. Descriptions of people and island life are as interesting as the plot devices, and there are riveting sections. The discovery of Gauguin paintings and a secret romance in the past, as well as the descriptions of the daily life in and around the island, its neighbours and the ship that visits regularly are the best parts of the story.

The book is let down in a few respects, that detract from an otherwise captivating story. That the author has done some research is evident, and appreciable in a story like this, but it falls short in his depictions of both British and American military, and plate-tectonics. Characters are many times hollow, and, sadly, the main character comes off as a bit of a jerk - he is far too selfish and lacking compassion to be convincing as a good, heroic doctor, especially in times of crisis. The female characters come across as one-dimensional, and the author seems to be under the impression that all American characters must use constant expletives. The most disappointing part of the book comes in the truncated Part Four, in which the author, possibly grown tired of his story, albeit loses the plot in both willing suspension of disbelief and characterisations.

Not at all a bad book, and quite a thrilling read. Definitely a good adventure with a little romance around the edges.
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
People always refer to Noel Barber as being a light read. However, with the fountain of accurate historical, geographic, scientific, medical and artistic knowledge in this book, I would beg to differ. May be the love affair with local "princess" was too much lip gloss and meringue but the rest of this tale was in fact an interesting and highly observant insight into colonial life in the pacific of that time. The TV episode I saw was a travesty of the real book, with key elements of the book plot removed, characters written out or so altered that only the fact that it was a british doctor on a tropical island remained the same.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Synopsis 18 Nov 2008
Format:Hardcover
When pioneering doctor Kit Masters is forced to flee England, he makes a new start on the South Sea island of Koraloona. Enchanted by the island and its people, Kit falls in love with the daughter of the island princess, and dreams of building a hospital. But all is under threat as war approaches.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great read 25 Sep 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Noel Barber is an ace adventure writer and has lived in Asia so his books are full of good advice and information. This story of a young Doctor on his first posting is full of good island stuff and I enjoyed it.
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