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Search tags: Kate-Furnivall
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review 2019-02-21 15:25
"The Survivors", by Kate Furnivall
The Survivors - Kate Furnivall

Post war Germany 1945, this epic historical fiction brings us to Graufeld Displaced Persons camp where we follow Klara Janowska and her daughter Alicja, they along with thousands others who needed to navigate through dangerous conditions and do anything to find a safe home. Klara and Alicja were the lucky ones.

Klara and Alicka are the heart in this sad tale. The story highlights how far a mother would go to protect her child and how deep the love of a daughter has for her mother. Both had endured the horrors of war before fleeing their native Poland walking for weeks to get to Graufeld , a camp where they found themselves in a grim situation, with basic rations and where they will be plunged in a cat and mouse game with an old adversary….. Oskar Schotz. 

The story is narrated by Klara, Alicja and Davide Bouvier, the camp administrator.

The characterisation is superb especially when Klara and Oskar circle each other amidst the confines of the camp. The story also moves beyond the camps’ walls where the cost of war is revealed in heart wrenching depth. Cruelty and kindness and simple human compassion are poignantly explored. Ms. Furnivall particularly knows how to emotional engage us with shocking events in the darkest days of wartime and by vividly bringing to life the uncertainty and desperation of the displaced.

“The Survivors” although brutal is beautifully written, full of tension, thrills, and historical details. This is another cleverly plotted historical fiction which explores the resistance of human against adversity.

Well-done

Thank you Simon & Schuster and Netgalleys for this ARC

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text 2017-04-29 20:37
What I am planning to read
Within the Sanctuary of Wings - Marie Brennan
Shadows on the Nile - Kate Furnivall
Natchez Burning - Greg Iles
East of the Sun - Julia Gregson
The Invisible Library - Genevieve Cogman

 Fantasyland 9

 

Read a book that is tagged fantasy or fairy tale on GR. I will be reading Within the Sanctuary of Wings by Marie Brennan as planned. This book is 352 pages, & is worth $3.00

 

New Orleans Square Station 14

 

Read a book that involves overseas travel or has a suitcase on the cover. I will be reading East of the Sun by Julia Gregson.

 

Carsland 18

 

Read a book that was published in 2006, 2011, 2013 or 2014, or that has a car on the cover. I am planning to read Natchez Burning by Greg Isles, which was published in 2014. Finished 4/30/17 - 865 pages ($10.00).

 

Adventureland 24

 

Read a book set in Asia or Africa. I will be reading Shadows on the Nile by Kate Furnival. Finished 5/5/17 - 448 pages ($5.00)

 

 

Tomorrowland 34

 

Read a book tagged YA or MG, or that has a child's on the cover. This one is an easy one! Let's go with The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman, which was shelved YA 215 times on GR!

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review 2017-01-01 00:00
Shadows on the Nile
Shadows on the Nile - Kate Furnivall 3.5 stars
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review 2016-10-30 06:23
Book Review: Shadows on the Nile
Shadows on the Nile - Kate Furnivall

Book: Shadows on the Nile

 

Author: Kate Furnivall

 

Genre: Fiction/Mystery/20th Century Britain/Egypt/Family Stories

 

Summary: 1912, London, Jessie Kenton hears her young brother, Georgie, scream in the middle of the night and wakes up the next morning to find him gone. Her parents never speak of him again. 1932. Twenty years later, Jessie is haunted by the same nightmare. Her other brother, Timothy, has inexplicably vanished from her parents’ home. Wracked by guilt because of her failure to ever find Georgie, and convinced that the two events must be related, she sets out on a quest to find Timothy. She plunges into a mysterious world of seances and mystics, nebulous clues and Egyptian artifacts. With the help of a dashing and impoverished aristocrat, Sir Montague Chamford, Jessie follows the trail into the alien, swirling sands of the Egyptian desert. Amid the ancient intrigue and blistering heat, a powerful romance sparks between Jessie and Monty. But they must first confront the demons of Jessie’s past - and reveal the dark secrets that threaten not only Timothy’s life but theirs as well. -Penguin, 2013.

 

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review 2013-12-28 18:00
Review: The Jewel of St. Petersburg by Kate Furnivall
The Jewel of St. Petersburg (The Russian Concubine, #3) - Kate Furnivall

I wish I could remember how I found out about this book. If I could find the person or website I would give them a big hug. Well, I don't think it is possible to hug a website, but if I could find a way I would. In any case, somehow I found out about the book. I love reading about early 1900s Russia. Something about the time period draws me in and doesn't let me go. Maybe it's like reading about the Titanic, always perched on the edge of your seat knowing what's going to happen, but hoping for a happy ending anyway.

In any case this brings me to The Jewel of St. Petersburg. The main character in this story is Valentina Ivanova, daughter of the financial director to the Tsar. She's grown up in privilege, but tragedy strikes the family and alters the path Valentina sets for herself. Jump ahead to 1910 and we get to see Russia on the brink of change.

The interesting part about this book is it has the perfect balance between the historical and the fiction. Entwined with the history, Valentina's story of what she does for love of her family and of Jens is remarkable. It twists and turns all the while taking Valentina from a child to an adult. She is such a strong character that is supported by some pretty dynamic characters as well.

But what pushed me into 4.5 star land was really the fact that it wasn't all Valentina's story, but also Russia's story. We received the story of the revolution through Arkin, a rebel Bolshevick ready to stir the flames of change in the heart of the people. Arkin was a great foil to Valentina. I couldn't hate him from what I know of history and even what he revealed of himself through the pages. 

Two minuses: One was the initial overuse of Russian words. I don't mind Russian words, but after one or two times don't tell me the direct English translation. I can figure it out by context. Either this tapered off as I read or I stopped noticing... 

The other minus was the ending, well not really the ending per say but my own ending experience. Let's step back. Picture it. I am sitting on a crowded airplane, soaking in the climactic scenes the novel was building towards. The end happens. "Wow! What and ending! I am completely satisfied!" I say. "Oh look! An excerpt from the next book!" I skim the pages and all of the happiness I had just felt was invalidated. I was kind of angry, but I did a little research and found that this book was in fact a prequel to the excerpt I skimmed, which would make for a whole different experience for the readers who read in publishing order. I felt better after that.

The Jewel of St. Petersburg is a wonder of historical fiction. I would recommend this to anyone. It has intrigue, war, romance, rebellion and great plot and characters. 

Plus look at how pretty that cover is! 4.5 stars!

 

Originally published on GR in Nov 2010

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