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1905 INDIA: Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive find their carefree life on their father's tea plantation threatened by his drinking and debts. Wesley Robson, a brash young rival businessman, offers to help save the plantation in exchange for beautiful Clarrie's hand in marriage, but her father flatly refuses. And when Jock Belhaven dies suddenly, his daughters 1905 INDIA: Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive find their carefree life on their father's tea plantation threatened by his drinking and debts. Wesley Robson, a brash young rival businessman, offers to help save the plantation in exchange for beautiful Clarrie's hand in marriage, but her father flatly refuses. And when Jock Belhaven dies suddenly, his daughters are forced to return to their father’s cousin in Tyneside and work long hours in his pub. In Newcastle, Clarrie is shocked by the dire poverty she witnesses, and dreams of opening her own tea room, which could be a safe haven for local women. To provide a living for herself and Olive, Clarrie escapes her dictatorial cousin Lily and takes a job as housekeeper for kindly lawyer Herbert Stock. But Herbert's vindictive son Bertie, jealous of Clarrie's popularity, is determined to bring about her downfall. Then Wesley Robson comes back into Clarrie's life, bringing with him a shocking revelation ... Set in the fascinating world of the Edwardian tea trade, THE TEA PLANTER’S DAUGHTER is a deeply involving and moving story with a wonderfully warm-hearted heroine.


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1905 INDIA: Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive find their carefree life on their father's tea plantation threatened by his drinking and debts. Wesley Robson, a brash young rival businessman, offers to help save the plantation in exchange for beautiful Clarrie's hand in marriage, but her father flatly refuses. And when Jock Belhaven dies suddenly, his daughters 1905 INDIA: Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive find their carefree life on their father's tea plantation threatened by his drinking and debts. Wesley Robson, a brash young rival businessman, offers to help save the plantation in exchange for beautiful Clarrie's hand in marriage, but her father flatly refuses. And when Jock Belhaven dies suddenly, his daughters are forced to return to their father’s cousin in Tyneside and work long hours in his pub. In Newcastle, Clarrie is shocked by the dire poverty she witnesses, and dreams of opening her own tea room, which could be a safe haven for local women. To provide a living for herself and Olive, Clarrie escapes her dictatorial cousin Lily and takes a job as housekeeper for kindly lawyer Herbert Stock. But Herbert's vindictive son Bertie, jealous of Clarrie's popularity, is determined to bring about her downfall. Then Wesley Robson comes back into Clarrie's life, bringing with him a shocking revelation ... Set in the fascinating world of the Edwardian tea trade, THE TEA PLANTER’S DAUGHTER is a deeply involving and moving story with a wonderfully warm-hearted heroine.

30 review for The Tea Planter's Daughter

  1. 4 out of 5

    Constantine

    Rating: 4.0/5.0 Genre: Historical A couple of years ago I have read the ARC of the third book in this series, The Girl from the Tea Garden and I liked it a lot. Each book can be read as a standalone as they have different characters and settings. The Tea Planter's Daughter's first 25% is set in India and the remaining portion is in London. The story is about Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive who under some difficult circumstances will have to leave India and their plantation and go liv Rating: 4.0/5.0 Genre: Historical A couple of years ago I have read the ARC of the third book in this series, The Girl from the Tea Garden and I liked it a lot. Each book can be read as a standalone as they have different characters and settings. The Tea Planter's Daughter's first 25% is set in India and the remaining portion is in London. The story is about Clarissa Belhaven and her younger sister Olive who under some difficult circumstances will have to leave India and their plantation and go live with a cousin in England after their father passes away. The story starts in 1905 when Clarissa is around 18 years old and continues until she is in her 30s. Like the other book I read in this series, Janet MacLeod Trotter focuses a lot on the character development of all her characters, the main as well as the secondary ones. The cultural aspect of the story is beautifully done too. The author has this ability to stick to fine details when describing the settings in that time period without boring the readers of unnecessary information. The flow of the story and its events is another aspect deserves to be praised here. There are no dull moments. I am going to continue reading the other books in this series because it is obvious that Janet MacLeod Trotter is the kind of author that writes stories and characters that catch my attention and interest. Available on Kindle Unlimited

  2. 5 out of 5

    Simply Sam ツ

    I really thought this would end up being more than a 3 star book. It had a great atmosphere and background and just really good bones. However, the connection between our h and H wasn't there. He was in maybe 5% of the book. How in the world can an epic, spanning love story between the two (which is what I thought I was getting) be built in such a short time? The short answer: it can't. I wanted them to be like Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy (they reminded me of them for some reason), but I never felt n I really thought this would end up being more than a 3 star book. It had a great atmosphere and background and just really good bones. However, the connection between our h and H wasn't there. He was in maybe 5% of the book. How in the world can an epic, spanning love story between the two (which is what I thought I was getting) be built in such a short time? The short answer: it can't. I wanted them to be like Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy (they reminded me of them for some reason), but I never felt nor understood their attraction. The animosity between characters throughout the book was just absurd and felt forced. If I were Wesley, there would be absolutely no way I'd pine after someone for 10+ years after being treated the way he is by Clarrie. And Clarrie....sheesh. She comes to some really asinine conclusions and acts rashly on more than one occasion. And don't even get me started on Olive... So it wasn't just the non-existent love story that I had an issue with, but also other character(s) actions and decisions. They just didn't always add up or make sense. However, even with that being said, I was continually drawn to the book. The villains of the story were wonderfully horrible people. I couldn't wait to read their parts so I could hate them even more. Plus, like I said before, I really liked the setting of the story, first in India then in England. I think both locales were well captured. I think one of the biggest reasons I kept going was that I was waiting for "the" moment when Clarrie would realize that Wesley wasn't this horrible person she'd made him out to be. And boy, did I have to wait for a LONG, long time. I do like a good slow burn, believe me I do. But this was not so much a slow burn as a 0-60 in 5 seconds that took 15 years to start. This is honestly probably just one of those instances where the reality does not live up to the expectation. If you are not expecting to be swept away by an epic romance but instead approach this more as a work of historical fiction you may not be as disappointed as I was.

  3. 5 out of 5

    KarenK2

    It's a strong 3.5 stars out of 5. I received this ARC from netgalley.com in exchange for a review. There are no surprises or complicated story lines to follow, this is easy reading 'chick lit' kind of book. That being said, I really liked the story. Set in the early 1900's, their fathers death forces Clarrie and her sister Olive to move from their home and all they knew in India to England. Strong willed Carrie makes decisions and choices, with the backdrop of WWI and the women's vote. It's a strong 3.5 stars out of 5. I received this ARC from netgalley.com in exchange for a review. There are no surprises or complicated story lines to follow, this is easy reading 'chick lit' kind of book. That being said, I really liked the story. Set in the early 1900's, their fathers death forces Clarrie and her sister Olive to move from their home and all they knew in India to England. Strong willed Carrie makes decisions and choices, with the backdrop of WWI and the women's vote.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    What a beautiful story beginning from the humid terrains of India to the unforgiving weather of Newcastle, England. I loved the relationship between Clarrie and her younger sister Olive as they grew from teenagers into stoic young women; facing harsh realities together and remaining strong in the face of much adversity. I found the storyline to be captivating and difficult to put down. Each character is well developed and there is a clear author dedication to the accuracy of her historical writi What a beautiful story beginning from the humid terrains of India to the unforgiving weather of Newcastle, England. I loved the relationship between Clarrie and her younger sister Olive as they grew from teenagers into stoic young women; facing harsh realities together and remaining strong in the face of much adversity. I found the storyline to be captivating and difficult to put down. Each character is well developed and there is a clear author dedication to the accuracy of her historical writing. There are some heartbreaking parts to this book but I think the parts I enjoyed most were when Clarrie refused to succumb to social pressures of her gender - I loved the fact a woman at the turn of the century refused to be a mere housewife and embarked on a career for herself. She is more than just the tea planters daughter. Other than the fact I felt the ending to be a little rushed, there isn't much critique to be had of this novel. I'm glad I decided to download this book, albeit somewhat on a whim. I will undoubtedly be seeking the next book in the series.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Clare O'Beara

    Clarissa Belhaven is a girl of mixed parentage, an Indian lady and English tea-planter - which doesn't matter in the hill country surrounded by other family plantations, but does come to matter after the death of her parents. She and her sister don't fit in to any society and the mechanising families on larger plantations do better so the girls have little choice about their lives. The exotic India and lives of ordinary people are well described. Clarissa ends up in Newcastle where tea is Englan Clarissa Belhaven is a girl of mixed parentage, an Indian lady and English tea-planter - which doesn't matter in the hill country surrounded by other family plantations, but does come to matter after the death of her parents. She and her sister don't fit in to any society and the mechanising families on larger plantations do better so the girls have little choice about their lives. The exotic India and lives of ordinary people are well described. Clarissa ends up in Newcastle where tea is England's national drink. Contrasts are well shown through the girl's eyes and her efforts to earn a living demonstrate the options open to young women of her day. Well researched and full of interest. I'm not awarding more stars because of the heavy backstory dump at the start; and the pretty, wilful heroine meeting a young man and thinking he is odious and arrogant - that formula has been done to death. These snags occur early so keep reading. I downloaded a copy from Net Galley for unbiased review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Nicki

    From the tea plantation in India to the grubby streets of Newcastle, I loved every single minute of the 15 hours and 42 minutes I listened to.  Sarah Coomes a new favourite narrator brought this story to life so perfectly as she became the many different characters with their various accents. She made me fall in love with young Will, despise nasty cousin Lilly, dread anything to do with entitled Bertie and Verity and hope for the very best for Clarrie and Olive. This story had me tutting, gasping From the tea plantation in India to the grubby streets of Newcastle, I loved every single minute of the 15 hours and 42 minutes I listened to.  Sarah Coomes a new favourite narrator brought this story to life so perfectly as she became the many different characters with their various accents. She made me fall in love with young Will, despise nasty cousin Lilly, dread anything to do with entitled Bertie and Verity and hope for the very best for Clarrie and Olive. This story had me tutting, gasping, shouting, tearing up and sighing with relief as I followed Clarrie’s journey. She was a wonderful character who I enjoyed spending my time with and will hopefully do it soon again in the next book. I never really thought I liked sagas, but this book has definitely made me want to listen to more and I’m so pleased that there are three more in the series. If you enjoy historical fiction with real characters who take you on a emotional roller-coaster you’ll love this book.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kim Fraser

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I ended up skimming a lot of this book. I felt like I was reading more of a narrative than a novel. I loved the beginning of this book, but I couldn't connect to the characters after the main one made a lot of untrue assumptions. That is one of my least favorite plots, when people are kept apart only because they don't bother to find out the truth of what's going on. It was also hard to believe how much in love she was with him when she supposedly though he was some horrible person just because I ended up skimming a lot of this book. I felt like I was reading more of a narrative than a novel. I loved the beginning of this book, but I couldn't connect to the characters after the main one made a lot of untrue assumptions. That is one of my least favorite plots, when people are kept apart only because they don't bother to find out the truth of what's going on. It was also hard to believe how much in love she was with him when she supposedly though he was some horrible person just because they had an amazing kiss years ago.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Renita D'Silva

    A beautiful story, exquisitely written.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Zoé-Lee O'Farrell

    Straight off the bat, I am going to say this is not normally the type of book I would pick up. I would probably umm and aaah, but I saw an awesome review by Nicki (Secret Library Book Blog) and I was intrigued. I then got it in on kindle Unlimited and it came with the audiobook. I am afraid it then sat there for months because I saw how long the audiobook was, a whopping 14 hours! Can I ask someone just slap me in the face? I now realise what I have been missing out on! The Tea Planter’s Daughter Straight off the bat, I am going to say this is not normally the type of book I would pick up. I would probably umm and aaah, but I saw an awesome review by Nicki (Secret Library Book Blog) and I was intrigued. I then got it in on kindle Unlimited and it came with the audiobook. I am afraid it then sat there for months because I saw how long the audiobook was, a whopping 14 hours! Can I ask someone just slap me in the face? I now realise what I have been missing out on! The Tea Planter’s Daughter is such a beautiful and haunting story of love, heartbreak, betrayal and solace. Beginning in 1905, on a beautiful tea plantation in India, where Clarissa and Olive are somebodies. Living and breathing tea, growing and selling until a heartbreak befalls the girls and they are shipped off to the grubby streets of Tyneside to a cousin they have never met. The contrast between the two lives is a shock to the system to not only the girls but us as a reader. No longer a somebody but basically a slave girl to a drunk and a racist. With their Indian heritage, they are always on the outside, not quite accepted by the Indians nor the British. Wesley Robson a competing tea planter to Clarrie’s dad Jock, and Jock can’t abide. He hates the Robson name and will not accept any help from him in any wake of life. The sad thing is, the contempt Jock feels for him and the family name carries down to Clarrie and she carries a conflicted torch for him, but of love and burning hatred. He, however, is the one constant in her life, both in the forefront and the background. When Clarrie manages to escape the clutches of her awful awful cousins she becomes the housekeeper for the Stock family and a new chapter in life starts. This chapter just broke me. Clarrie really does not seem to catch a break, ok she doesn’t always help herself but she does not deserve the way Bertie Stock treats her. If I was talking to you face to face, you would hear and see the amount of contempt I have for him and his wife Verity! Awful despicable people. I loathed them, and when they were about I would roll my eyes with everything Bertie or his wife Verity said. This being said Clarrie did cause me a few eye-rolling moments, she can be a bit infuriating at times as she would jump the gun before others spoke. Spoke up too many times when she should have held back first and waited, but I think what you tend to forget is that she is just a young girl when we meet her, the early 20s and so not quite grown out of her impulsive ways. Plus with the freedom she has the breathtaking plantation with no class system, so to speak, to concern her she doesn’t always remember where her new place is when she comes to Tyneside. There is so much in this story, so much is covered, from the early 1900s to a country facing the First World War and the impact it has on the girls and the people they hold dearest. I was crying at the end, especially when Clarrie receives a letter from Will! It broke me! That’s all I will say. The love for young Will Stock holds for Clarrie was so pure and l only to see! Not a replacement mum but she has become almost an older sister to him. The love they have for each other was lovely to see when she has no one else she had Will. I can’t keen talking about the plot otherwise I will ruin it for you! But it was one hell of a start to this saga! It just took my breath away. I really did not think that a book could affect me as much as this one did. I was right there with Clarrie and I just wanted her to be happy and in love. She has been through way too much, but her determination carried her through. She sees the positive in everything and even when she is falling into despair she kept going and put everyone else first, even if they didn’t deserve it! I listened to this when I was at work, driving home, doing the housework, any chance I got! It was on my mind when I had stopped and I was always eager to get back to it. When I realised I was near the end I got too impatient and had to finish the book on my Kindle. The ending made me smile and I feel so satisfied. I know when I close that book that Clarrie will be ok, I just hope it’s not the last we see of her!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    The Tea Planter's Daughter is a sweeping family melodrama that takes place in the early 20th century and relates the tale of two orphaned sisters, Clarissa ( Clarrie) and Olive, that leave their birthplace of India and struggle to survive among relatives in England. I felt this tale to be reminiscent of Jennifer Donnelly's trilogy, The Tea Rose,The Winter Rose, and The Wild Rose, a series that I highly enjoyed. The Tea Planter's Daughter is focused mainly on Clarrie, older sister and her journe The Tea Planter's Daughter is a sweeping family melodrama that takes place in the early 20th century and relates the tale of two orphaned sisters, Clarissa ( Clarrie) and Olive, that leave their birthplace of India and struggle to survive among relatives in England. I felt this tale to be reminiscent of Jennifer Donnelly's trilogy, The Tea Rose,The Winter Rose, and The Wild Rose, a series that I highly enjoyed. The Tea Planter's Daughter is focused mainly on Clarrie, older sister and her journey from penniless orphan to the head of a middle-class family's household and finally into a successful businesswoman. Clarrie is what many readers like their book heroines regardless of the time period- feisty, stubborn, determined, protective of family members, fighter of social injustice, etc. But Clarrie is also NOT PERFECT and at times she is even a little infuriating. Especially among her personal relationships. While Clarrie has been often quick to tell others where they are at fault, she is very slow to accept her own pre-conceived notions and failings. All things that will either make a reader love her or want to slap her. Personally, I would ask other readers to refrain from this impulse. Of course, I only say this because I am somewhat relieved that we didn't have the story from Olive's perspective. I wanted to scream at how many times the sentence " Olive said tearfully " appeared on the page. Yes, she was only thirteen, but the whining and later the jealousy towards Clarrie was (in my opinion) so silly. Show some gratitude, kid! In addition, the continued misunderstandings between Clarrie and Will reminded me of William Makepeace Thackeray's Vanity Fair. A lesson that we should never allow what we think happened injure the chance to build relationships with others. A very engaging tale! Thanks to NetGalley for a " Read Now" e-arc of this story.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn Vandine West

    I really enjoyed this book, could be considered a little rambling but very relaxing. This was a refreshing look at life in India and the history behind the tea industry. The interaction between Clarrie and her sister Olive over the years following the death of their father was quite interesting to follow. I am looking forward to the next book in the series I was provided a preview e-copy of this book from NetGalley, I was not required to post. Review and thi did not affect my opinion in any way

  12. 4 out of 5

    L F

    Twisty Plot This book goes up and down on a twisty road through the world of tea planters. But the author does make a real page turner with much historical detail. The author emerges as a real storyteller by the end of the book. Curiosity of the outcome will have you up all night to finish this wonderful book.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Joann

    This book is the start to a series of books that are set in early India. I enjoy books set in India a lot as they seem to be great escapism for me. This one takes place mostly in England and here again, the accent used by the narrators left me wanting. Putting aside the accents, this was the beginning of the story of Clarissa and her sister Olive. Clarissa Belhaven is a girl of mixed parentage, an Indian lady and English tea-planter. This is her story and it does fill you in on how hard life was This book is the start to a series of books that are set in early India. I enjoy books set in India a lot as they seem to be great escapism for me. This one takes place mostly in England and here again, the accent used by the narrators left me wanting. Putting aside the accents, this was the beginning of the story of Clarissa and her sister Olive. Clarissa Belhaven is a girl of mixed parentage, an Indian lady and English tea-planter. This is her story and it does fill you in on how hard life was for them when they first arrived in England. She somehow, despite all the set-backs, is able to make it through and also have a cheery outlook.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jewel

    I think it's the interesting setting that kept me going more than the characters and plot. The story follows the Belhaven girls as they move from their home in India to England, and the struggles and sorrows they face. Clarissa and Olive born and raised in India in their family's Tea Plantation, have to leave all they care for when their father dies leaving them nothing. It will take them years to finally find any peace, especially Clarissa, who in her proud rash youth refuses Wesley Robson, and lo I think it's the interesting setting that kept me going more than the characters and plot. The story follows the Belhaven girls as they move from their home in India to England, and the struggles and sorrows they face. Clarissa and Olive born and raised in India in their family's Tea Plantation, have to leave all they care for when their father dies leaving them nothing. It will take them years to finally find any peace, especially Clarissa, who in her proud rash youth refuses Wesley Robson, and loses her home with him, now a widow alone in England how will she survive. From the Tea Plantations in Asam in India to England, WW1 and the Tea Industry, this book had a lot going on. And sometimes too many details that made me lost interest. I wanted more of India and maybe less of their time with the Stocks. But I have enjoyed it and will go on reading the rest of the series. Audio book note: the reader keeps changing her tone of the characters that you get lost sometimes.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Soph

    A sea of emotion After a 4 month slump from reading this book finally got me back from the depths. A combination of vivid imagery and mountains of emotion; this books contains it all. I felt an automatic love for Clarrie with her stubborn pride and heart full of dreams. I wanted for her to finally be happy. Really looking forward to the rest of the series!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Claire

    Couldn't finish it. The story wasn't going anywhere and the audio narrator was wayyy too extra with all her voices. Tone it down, girl. Couldn't finish it. The story wasn't going anywhere and the audio narrator was wayyy too extra with all her voices. Tone it down, girl.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Priscilla Carina

    I picked this book up because I wanted to read something in german again and I thought why not try out something like this, since I don't really go for these types of books. During the first hundred pages, I couldn't enjoy the story very much, as I think the author moved too fast in terms of romantic feelings. It just didn't seem that realistic to me, but that's my opinion. However, this changed afterward as the characters had more time to develop. What drove me to not put the book aside was the I picked this book up because I wanted to read something in german again and I thought why not try out something like this, since I don't really go for these types of books. During the first hundred pages, I couldn't enjoy the story very much, as I think the author moved too fast in terms of romantic feelings. It just didn't seem that realistic to me, but that's my opinion. However, this changed afterward as the characters had more time to develop. What drove me to not put the book aside was the development of Clarrie and her sister. Especially of Clarrie. The protagonist is repeatedly faced with overwhelming hurdles but overcomes them with much sweat and tears. The young girl grows rapidly into a sensible and hard-fighting woman who does everything for her family. She constantly has others on her mind and neglects herself, but still musters the energy to keep going every time. The countless strokes of fate bring in a human aspect and allow the reader to emotionally share in the journey. Most things were pretty predictable, but that's not the point. Many stories are predictable, but what sets them apart is the relatability with the characters.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Gaynor Mackenzie-Cooke

    Passions overflow in this book I could smell India and feel the warmth. It is a story of love and passion. A move to the northeast of England set against the First world war is a marked contrast to India. Told in a sensitive and heart warning way.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Louise

    Love a good historical novel set in Newcastle and how they managed in war time. I just love these feel good books lol

  20. 5 out of 5

    Breanna Lockwood

    would have been been a more enjoyable read if the end wasn't rushed but still kind of okay with it. a must read. would have been been a more enjoyable read if the end wasn't rushed but still kind of okay with it. a must read.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Linda Kovic-Skow

    I enjoyed this story and I thought the writing was very good. I do think, however, that it took a wee bit too long for the story to reach it's inevitable conclusion. I enjoyed this story and I thought the writing was very good. I do think, however, that it took a wee bit too long for the story to reach it's inevitable conclusion.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Liz.messent

    Predictable love story, but intriguing settings in India and 1900s Newcastle.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rita

    Pride and prejudice meets a woman of substance

  24. 4 out of 5

    Aly Brice

    It's one of those easy, mostly predictable novels, but fun and a quick read. It's one of those easy, mostly predictable novels, but fun and a quick read.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Siyana Simeonova

    A truly mesmerising book which keeps you immersed in the story from the first till the last page!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Betty

    Enjoyed this book immensely and will definitely read more in the series. Excellent plotting and descriptions.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kate Smith

    Listened to this book through my kindle unlimited. Loved the narration of this lovely story.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kathi Wason

    The Tea Planter's Daughter I can't t wait to start the next book, yes it is that good! It is relatable, readable, and ended on a positive note. We'll written, good story, very believable. The Tea Planter's Daughter I can't t wait to start the next book, yes it is that good! It is relatable, readable, and ended on a positive note. We'll written, good story, very believable.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Katherine

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Much better than I expected, I figured I'd probably abandon it after the first chapter but it held me right to the end. The story didn't go the way I'd expected, although it opens in India the action soon switches to the North East of England, the heroine plunging from privileged plantation owner's daughter to working-class orphan having to make her own way in the world. There's enough historical insight here to make it interesting, in particular I enjoyed the tea-rooms that Clarrie establishes, Much better than I expected, I figured I'd probably abandon it after the first chapter but it held me right to the end. The story didn't go the way I'd expected, although it opens in India the action soon switches to the North East of England, the heroine plunging from privileged plantation owner's daughter to working-class orphan having to make her own way in the world. There's enough historical insight here to make it interesting, in particular I enjoyed the tea-rooms that Clarrie establishes, and brief mentions of the political groups that meet there. In many ways, the novel would have been stronger if this was the main focus! It works much better as a historical novel than a romance - the romance aspect is unconvincing, too much of a stereotypical love-hate relationship with Wesley Robson from the start. Realistically, Wesley just doesn't figure strongly enough to be the romantic hero; while we meet him at first, he disappears from the action for large swathes of the book, he's just not part of Clarrie's daily life. The ending felt forced, both the argument at the stables and the sudden appearance of Will's letter urging Clarrie to be friendly to him... then the passionate realisation that they've loved each other all along. ...Nah. Not buying it. It's a pity, the ending lets down what was otherwise an interesting read. I guess it's a genre issue - it's a historical romance, so the romance has to be shoe-horned in at the end. For me the novel would have been so much stronger if it had just focused on Clarrie making her way in the world during this time of radical social change and becoming a successful business woman, stuff the romance!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Mirella

    I'm always a big fan of historical fiction that sweeps me away to more exotic locations. This novel definitely did just that. The two sisters in the story, Clarissa and Olive Belhaven, are raised in the lap of luxury on an Indian tea plantation. After the death of their mother, their father turns to the bottle to find solace. He becomes a recluse, a drunk, and the plantation ultimately begins to suffer. Enter the handsome Wesley Robson, a descendant of a family that has been long time enemies an I'm always a big fan of historical fiction that sweeps me away to more exotic locations. This novel definitely did just that. The two sisters in the story, Clarissa and Olive Belhaven, are raised in the lap of luxury on an Indian tea plantation. After the death of their mother, their father turns to the bottle to find solace. He becomes a recluse, a drunk, and the plantation ultimately begins to suffer. Enter the handsome Wesley Robson, a descendant of a family that has been long time enemies and rivals of the Belhavens. He is setting up a tea plantation in direct competition to theirs. His offer to buy the Belhaven plantation is rejected. That's when the trouble starts. Clarissa's father dies and Clarissa is forced to sell everything and move to England to live with a distant uncle. Once there, the girls find themselves living under great hardship as they are put to work as servants and treated shabbily with almost no pay. Clarissa then struggles to escape her dire circumstances. Lush with description and a terrific storyline, I thoroughly loved this novel. From its stunning cover to the great tale of hardship, survival, and love, there is much to laud. I definitely and strongly recommend this for lovers of family sagas and Indian settings. A lovely read! Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

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