Friday, 14 May 2010

Victoria Hislop: The island

On the brink of a life-changing decision, Alexis Fielding longs to find out about her mother’s past. But Sofia has never spoken of it. But when Alexis decides to visit Crete, Sofia gives her daughter a letter to take to an old friend, and promises that through her she will learn more.
Arriving in Plaka, Alexis is astonished to see that it lies a stone’s throw from the tiny, deserted island of Spinalonga – Greece’s former leper colony. Then she finds Fortini, and at last hears the story that Sofia has buried all her life: the tale of her great-grandmother Eleni and her daughters and a family rent by tragedy, war and passion. She discovers how intimately she is connected with the island, and how secrecy holds them all in its powerful grip..

This is an incredibly powerful story about never-ending and enduring love, about passion and beliefs. Although I found the beginning of the book too clichéd, the story soon unfolded to be gripping and reading about the leper colony and Sofia's family turned out to be an emotional roller-coster.

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