3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
The truth is stranger than fiction.,
This review is from: A Cornish Stranger (Kindle Edition)
I galloped through this in a few hours, loving the references to our wonderful Helford River area. Liz Fenwick has found her niche, a perfect setting for her varied stories and this, the third, is the most accomplished. The artwork on the cover is fabulous.
Initially, I found that the frequent use of the name 'Jaunty' jarred; the confessional passages written by this lady, 'J,' shall we call her, appropriately, for a little relief, seemed at first, slow to gather momentum, perhaps, to be fair, because they were being written by a failing 92 year old lady. Happily things speed up and the rollicking good story gathers wind in its sails and sets off at a lick. By the end you have to stay awake and keep up, there are adventures to be had, misapprehensions corrected, threads drawn up tight, secret doors opened.
Glorious descriptions of art, nature, birds and boats chime happily with my own life, forty five years, spent here. Swimming in the creek was beautifully described, this must have been from personal experience. The wooden house at the mouth of Frenchman's' was aching for a romance to be set there, although already the real life tale of it's reclusive male occupant Powder Thurburn is told superbly in The Artist Who Loved Boats: Percy 'Powder' Thurburn - Mariner,Artist, Adventurer (1869-1961). As an inspiration, a starting point, for A Cornish Stranger, his own life deserved the excellent, illustrated book his friends wrote about him.
SOE operations from the Helford during the last war are also touched on, for other novels, about this clandestine effort, sometimes organised from The Helford River, try Deep Water Night Sky or Charlotte Gray
Liz Fenwick sends Gabe to the aid of her ailing grandmother, Jaunty, an acclaimed artist who has lived here, most privately, since the end of WWII. Little realising that she is about to uncover a hornet's nest of Jaunty's long kept secrets, Gabe settles in to the cabin to help. She is feeling low herself, unable to fully enjoy her inherited musical talents, which are blocked by a horrible episode that has left her damaged and nervous; Gabe has her own demons to face. Help is to hand fortunately, we can enjoy her thawing out, physically and emotionally.
Out of a storm a drama unfolds and a stranger must be rescued. Gabe summons all her strength and resources to save a life. This is where the mysteries tumble out of their boxes, past lives are awakened and unfortunately the truth must out. The man she saves is significant, there are connections to tease out. All the while there are songs to be sung, coffee to be savoured, wine to be shared, sketches to be drawn, music composed and friends to be made. Manaccan, St. Anthony, Helford and the Helford River are the busy backdrop, the local folk friendly, talented, interested, helpful, caring and kind. All as it should be!
Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Jun 2014 20:24:26 BDT
Angie J S says:
Great review, can't wait to read this. On my wish list
‹ Previous 1 Next ›