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The Secret Children by [McQueen, Alison]
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The Secret Children Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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Length: 367 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Product Description

Review

A vivid tale inspired by the author's own family history. (EASY LIVING)

touching novel about the the need to belong and find one's place in the world, and a portrait of a country and a society during a period of upheaval and change. (GOOD BOOK GUIDE)

This is a wonderful novel. A page-turner that is gripping, sensitive and thought-provoking. Highly recommended. (HISTORIAL NOVELS SOCIETY)

Book Description

In 1920s India, where do two little girls belong? Born of two cultures, belonging to neither...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1269 KB
  • Print Length: 367 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (19 Jan. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006W2V02M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #14,100 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I could hardly put this book down, as it was so intriguing. It's a sad tale, and paints a portrait of how life was in India before and during its independence and partition.
Particularly, it is the tale of the two girls who were born to an Indian mother and English father in the 1920's. It tells of the problems and the apparent impossibility of them and their parents becoming a family. I would like to think that things are very much different now, although in this case the differences in background and life experience between the man and woman were so vast that they would have no meeting ground except the obvious. The man behaved in a very unfair and unthinking way. When the children were born, he realised his folly, but of course, it was too late. He regretted it for the rest of his life.
The story begins with the daughter of one of the girls at her mother's funeral in England, with her aunt, who is the sister of the deceased. The aunt tells the story for the first time, having promised her sister she never would tell anyone, as long as they both should live.
I cannot really say much more without giving away too much of the content. I think this is really a worthwhile and absorbing book, and appears to reveal a deep understanding of how things were and are. I have never been to India so it is hard for me to know how true it all is, but I feel that it is so, as I have heard tales of India from people who have lived there in the past.
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Format: Hardcover
I just finished this book after receiving it a few days ago and am utterly blown away. The novel is gripping, emotional and beautifully written. I found myself weeping on more than one occasion at this truly touching story. I was dubious at first, wondering how easy the story would be able to get into with it being set in 1920's India but after the first few chapters I was hooked. The characters' journeys are beautifully intertwined and I felt a deep connection to them by the end of the story. Mary and Serafina's journey is a complex and heartbreaking one and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it. A highly recommended read.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The Secret Sisters by Alison McQueen is a book which I highly recommend to all readers of fiction though this book was based on the authors own family history. James McDonald the sister's father ran a tea plantation but he lived a lonely life so he bought a young beautiful girl as a concubine not realising what he was starting when he did this. He thought he was doing no harm by doing this, he actually thought he was saving this girl from a life of poverty. This started a wonderful story which the author showed the reader not only the beauty of the country but also the beauty of the people who inhabited this land which held so many different customs and beliefs which the author showed the reader so well.
Alison McQueen is an author who clearly loves India and its people and this was clear to the reader through her story telling. She painted a vivid picture using her words and I loved every page which I read. The story she told was a heart wrenching one and she told it sympathetically not only towards the sisters Serafina and Mary but also their mother and the servants that served them daily. I loved the way the author opened up the customs of India and through her words I got a clearer understanding to the ways of the people especially towards their beliefs and fears of the unknown.
With each turn of the page I just wanted happiness for the girls but they spent their lives being controlled by those around them. They accepted each stage of their lives without complaint and did what was asked of them without questioning why they were sent with each new stage of their lives.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is based upon the life of the author’s mother and aunt born in 1920’s India. It tells a heart-breaking tale of such a different era when these ‘secret children’ were locked away for no one to see.
I found it an interesting read, and it was extremely well written. It was a moving story that was told simply and very well and I enjoyed every moment of it. I’m going to recommend it to my book club next time we meet, and I’ve also just ordered her next book ‘Under the Jewelled Sky’.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Whilst I enjoyed the story,I love tales of the RAJ in India, there is too much "padding" for most of the book which I skimmed and twowards the end when the tale really gathered momentum and I wanted to know more, it ended. Too many unanswered questions.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well written, the descriptions of life in colonial India for children born into a mixed race family are enthralling. Attitudes of the British ruling class to indigenous people of the continent were disgraceful and yet were universally accepted at the time.
One couldn't help but feel for the plight of the children and the sad demise of the mother who fades into obscurity as the story unfolds.
I admired the tenacity of each of the sisters who dealt with their lot in life in different ways as befits differing characters.
This is an amazing book more so because it is mostly a true story. I loved all the characters, flaws and all. They are humans with hopes and dreams just like we all do
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