EXCERPT: ‘What I’d like to do this time,’ says Inspector Williams on his second visit, is ask you a bit about your time in the forces. I believe you joined up after you lost your husband, when he was killed in action. In 1943, wasn’t it?’
‘Is that when it was? I can’t remember dates. Hugh wasn’t at all keen for me to join. He wanted me to wait for him, but I so wanted to do something useful.’ She looks across the room at Pat, who is sitting with her arms crossed looking irritated. ‘Can you remember, dear? When my poor Hugh was killed?’
ABOUT THIS BOOK: You can pay a terrible price for keeping a promise…
Evelyn Taylor-Clarke sits in her chair at Forest Lawns Care Home in the heart of the English countryside, surrounded by residents with minds not as sharp as hers. It would be easy to dismiss Evelyn as a muddled old woman, but her lipstick is applied perfectly, and her buttons done up correctly. Because Evelyn is a woman with secrets and Evelyn remembers everything. She can never forget the promise she made to the love of her life, to discover the truth about the mission that led to his death, no matter what it cost her…
When Evelyn’s niece Pat opens an old biscuit tin to find a photo of a small girl with a red ball entitled ‘Liese, 1951’ and a passport in another name, she has some questions for her aunt. And Evelyn is transported back to a place in Germany known as ‘The Forbidden Village,’ where a woman who called herself Eva went where no one else dared, amongst shivering prisoners, to find the man who gambled with her husband’s life…
MY THOUGHTS: Right off, I have to say that I loved the character of Evelyn. She is perceptive, clever and oh so manipulative! She runs rings around everyone else. I hope that if I make it into my nineties, I shall be as sharp as she is.
While I loved the story of Eva/Evie/Evelyn/Hildebrand, and applauded her and rooted for her throughout, I did have a few issues with the writing. I felt that the author repeated herself a little to often, and that the moving backwards and forwards between the war days and afterwards, and the present (2016) could have been handled a little better. It didn’t flow in parts and a few times I wondered when and where I was…. I felt that Evie’s letters to her husband added little to the plot, and were often a cause of the repetition.
But overall I enjoyed the story (enjoyed it enough to read it in one sitting) and plan to read more by this author.
THE AUTHOR: This is the debut novel for Suzanne Goldring, who has previously published Powerless – The Year the Lights Went Out.
DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Bookouture vis NetGalley for providing a digital ARC of My Name is Eva by Suzanne Goldring for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own opinions.
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