book reviews , different studio guests each week. Join us every Thursday between 12 and 1pm on Radio Scilly 107.9fm or log on to radioscilly.com.

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Saturday, 24 August 2013

Deidre Purcell - Pearl

REviewed live on bookshow by Babs Simpson 22nd August 2013
THE FIRST PART OF THIS IRISH NOVEL IS EXTREMELY GLOOMY - FILLED WITHCRUELTY, POVERTY & UNREMITTING MISERY - BUT I PERSISTED BECAUSE IT IS SO BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN.  AND I AM VERY GLAD I DID.
THE TITLE CHARACTER, PEARL, LIVES WITH HER PARENTS, SISTER OPAL AND YOUNGER BROTHER WILLIE IN THE GATEHOUSE TO A MANSION OWNED BY THE ARISTOCRATIC ENGLISH ARETON FAMILY.  PEARLS FATHER IS EMPLOYED AS A CHAUFFEUR TO LORD ARETON WHO IS A MEAN AND CALLOUS EMPLOYER AND FATHER.
PEARLS BROTHER, WILLIE, IS KILLED BY A HORSE IN THE STABLES AT THE BIG HOUSE AND FROM THEN ON THINGS GO RAPIDLY DOWNHILL.   HOWEVER, 15YR OLD PEARL BECOMES CLOSE TO THOMAS ARETON, THE YOUNG HEIR TO THE TITLE AND ESTATE, WHO IS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT FROM HIS DREADFULLY HARD FATHER.
NEEDLESS TO SAY THEY ARE SEPARATED BUT PEARL GOES ON TO ENJOY A SUCCESSFUL CAREER AS A WRITER - MANY OF HER STORIES BEING INSPIRED BY HER CHILDHOOD EXPERIENCES IN RURAL IRELAND.
SHE NEVER MARRIES AND SHE AND OPAL SHARE A HOUSE ON THE COAST AND ARE VERY FOND OF THEIR YOUNG COUSIN, ELIZABETH, WHO GOES TO AMERICA TO STUDY BUT HAS A VERY TRAUMATIC ENCOUNTER WITH A MAN THERE AND RETURNS IN A VERY EMOTIONAL AND FRAGILE STATE.  PEARL TRIES TO TAKE ELIZABETH'S MIND OFF WHAT HAS HAPPENED BY CONFIDING IN HER OWN DOOMED LOVE AFFAIR AND THINGS MOVE TO A VERY PLEASING CONCLUSION.
THIS IS A REALLY GOO READ, WONDERFUL WRITING AND A VERY SATISFYING STORY PEOPLED WITH VIVID CHARACTERS. 
 

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