Christmas Awards 2011

Thursday 24 May 2007

The Loveday Loyalty

Kate Tremayne/The Loveday Loyalty/ Headline/ ISBN 0-7553-2872-8/ pb/499pgs/ £5.99
This is the latest in the continuing Cornish saga about the Loveday family. In this book the twins Adam and St John are still caught up in the power struggle between them. St John inherited Trevowan, the house and estate that Adam loved, and still neglects it. Adam has the shipyard, which until his father's recent death, had always been seen as a part of the Trevowan estate, and he is doing his utmost to keep the business solvent with many new ventures. His cousin Japhet, having been sent to Australia as a penalty for his crime is now in charge of Adam's venture there, and is struggling with the corrupt military to ensure a fair profit for Adam's goods. Meanwhile, Hannah, another of Adam's cousins, is being haunted by the smuggler Harry Sawle, who is determined on revenge and seduction. It seems that the Loveday family is now in terrible trouble and must pull together to avoid disaster.

This book is an intricate tapestry of Cornish life in the eighteenth century, with so many compelling characters and plot threads that it would be impossible to give more than a flavour of the book in one review. Ms Tremayne is a master storyteller and paints a vivid picture, bringing her characters to life with such force that the reader feels like a fly on the wall, privileged to peek into the lives of many different families. This is a big book, something to take on holiday and really settle down with, because it demands your complete attention.

For its sheer scope of drama and acute sense of place and time, I give this book a bouquet of red roses. I hope the series will continue because there are not enough of this kind of book around for those who love them. Linda Sole

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