- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 535 KB
- Print Length: 240 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Crafty Publishing (25 Sept. 2011)
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B005PP3VK6
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #439,163 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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The Peace Garden Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The enormous sweep of years she has to deal with is a knotty problem for any historical story, and she manages this well, though I felt she could almost have written 2 books (it wouldn't make a trilogy) - the background and the resolution - but that wouldn;t have been a mystery which is obvoiusly what she wanted to do. So inevitably there is a bit of squashing and author-telling, whichkindof interupts the flow of action.
She also seems to drop her lovely Geordie accents at the far end of the book, which I regretted, since she does it so well. For these things, I dropped one star, as it's not quite perfect - but buy it, read it, and enjoy.
Natalie's sleuthing efforts bring her into contact with an enigmatic black South African academic and his teenage son living at the end of the road. Everyone has them down as the plant thieves; and issues of racial prejudice are sensitively explored both in the English suburban context and, later, in South Africa itself.
Interwoven with the escalating mystery of the missing plants and the past lives of the possible perpetrators - which brings the reader unavoidably face-to-face with the tragic history of apartheid - is the delicately portrayed off-and-on romance that develops between young Natalie and Thabo, the bitter South African teenager now forced by circumstances to live with his father in Britain. Is he a `good guy' or a `bad guy'? Natalie's doubts on this score - and the reader's - persist almost to the last page.
This is a great story, with a compulsively page-turning conclusion, which also gives the reader an inside look at many of the conflicting issues of racial prejudice in its most notorious institutional expression - apartheid South Africa.
At first it seems the only thing to disturb the suburban tranquillity of the aptly named Jasmine Close is the theft of a few plants – and the concern that Granny might not win this year’s Most Beautiful Garden contest.
Then, just when we think it’s safe to relax, the roller coaster picks up speed. Suddenly we find ourselves plunged into a different world of mystery, suspicion, racism, sexual awakening and international politics.
Perhaps the most impressive thing about the book is the author’s ability to hold together the two worlds, and to do that convincingly.
At first, I wasn’t sure about the title: Peace Garden sounded a bit uninspiring. But now, you might say, it’s grown on me. If we’re going to end international conflict and live together in peace, we need to start treating our small planet as a garden and not as a battlefield.
And that’s going to take trust and a lot of love. Which is what this book is really about.
I have to say that I really enjoyed the fact that I recognised a lot of the places and geordie talk in the book, but even better was the way the story progressed into a very surprising and enjoyable read involving folk from south africa and the struggle that went on there.
Great relationships amongst the characters just enhanced the whole experience.
Recommended to all unsuspecting readers.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A fascinating story, which expertly straddles two contrasting settings. I was particularly interested in the section which was set in South Africa under apartheid: although it's... Read morePublished on 14 Mar. 2014 by Grace Foster
I really enjoyed this book. It has a gentle start, which helped to get to know the characters, who are beautifully described. Read morePublished on 6 Nov. 2013 by Lynda Alsford
I really enjoyed this book, it drew me in and kept me reading. It opened up for me, from a personal point of view, the situation as the era of apartheid drew to a close in South... Read morePublished on 2 July 2013 by Fizzylynn
To be honest, when I started reading The Peace Garden, I wasn't really expecting much. But very soon, within the first chapter, I drastically changed my tune. Read morePublished on 22 April 2013 by Teresa
This story takes a strange course - from the theft of plants in 1990, to attempted murder and assassination plots in 2001, by way of South Africa in the apartheid years. Read morePublished on 10 July 2012 by Paul T.