You might be wondering why I, a crime and noir merchant, is doing reading a historical romance. Well, firstly, no matter what one’s chosen genre is, it is healthy and wise and good for the creative soul to read widely and venture out of the comfort zone. I came across Samantha on Twitter and I discovered her wonderful blog that fuses both literature and cuisine http://samanthajwright.com/
We got in touch and communicated and I was deeply impressed with the synopsis, and especially the work and research that went into this. The location, Hebridean Scotland and the topic matter, is something that has personal resonations with the author so I immediately felt that this novel could be one that had a lot of soul, empathy and integrity.
And I wasn’t wrong. Historical romance maybe but its the story of the essence of the human spirit. Set in 19th Scotland, Lorna, our heroine, over comes her oppressive parents and makes it alone to live in Oban. So what you might say but in those times, the idea of a young woman of 16 leaving home and escaping was not widely heard off. It happened but mostly with devastating consequences. No living-away-from-home grants in those days or Friends-style-apartment-living neither. You would have been very much on your own, prey to the vicissitudes of life and of course, men with less than honourable intentions.
Lorna finds love but through terrible twists of fate, ends up being exiled to Australia. The imagery in the writing tranported me there, I could almost feel the wind and seasalt in my hair and tongue. The physicality of the terrain was a wonderfully evocative metaphor for the harshness and emotional void Lorna’s childhood and adolescence floundered in.
The themes of redemptive love but having it dashed is theme we all know but this is a treatise in fatalism at the same time. Perhaps I’m trying to map my noir bias onto this book but many themes are present in any novel worth its salt. I’m not a fan of labels but we live in a metatag world these days. It’s a shame because the term Historical Romance would put off many people and its an eyeopener for me to both read and thoroughly enjoy this book.
It’s not without humour and Samantha has a wry way of words. Many of her observations and descriptiosn are fired like arrows at unique tangents and this makes for both an entertaining and highly engaging piece of work.
In conclusion, this is a fantastic book and Samantha J Wright is an example of another literary diamond hidden under the bushel. I recommend this book completely
You can buy this book online by following the link : http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Sands-of-Carsaig-ebook/dp/B004WF4DT8/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top