At The Going Down Of The Sun And In The Morning, We Will Remember Them
The River Between Us by Liz Fenwick is a powerful dual timeline novel about life, love and loss. The love found within its pages radiates outwards to encompass the reader.
The novel is set in present day and mainly in 1914 and up to 1921. As the dates suggest, this is a time of loss. A whole generation of young men were lost as cannon fodder to the battle fields of France.
Love is the main theme. There are many different sorts of love – that of a mother, of children towards their parents, of a nanny towards her charges and between couples. In 1914 some of this love was forbidden.
This links to the theme of identity. Some characters had to hide who they were for fear of judgment and/or incarceration.
1914 was a frustrating time for women. They were seeking the vote, marriage alliances were for wealth and power and not for love, love matches between the different social classes were a no-no.
It is against this background that the leading lady tries to break free from all constraints. She is brave, gutsy and forward thinking but then war intervenes and all she can do is to pray for her loved ones at the Front.
The two time periods are linked by the Cornish setting where a discovery of a century old pile of letters prompts those in present day to learn the stories of the past.
There are the themes of truth and secrets. Some secrets needed to be kept in 1914 for fear of what others said or worse. In present day secrets are unearthed and the truth is revealed.
I could not get enough of The River Between Us and greedily devoured it on an otherwise gloomy afternoon. It brightened my day as I learned about lives, losses and deep love. True love does not die but remains down the years. It was a powerful, beautiful book.
I received a free copy from Harper Collins via Net Galley. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.
Top Five… Cornish Ice Creams by Liz Fenwick
It’s always hard to pick five top things of anything but I think ice creams, my secret passion, is the hardest. Cornish ice cream is divine. And since you might be wondering…although not my favourite flavour, vanilla is the one I use to judge the quality of ice cream. (Jelberts in Newlyn serves only vanilla and it’s so good!). You can’t hide with vanilla…unless it’s covered in a rich buttery chocolate sauce! My absolute favourite flavour is a tie between coffee and mint choc chip. So without further ado here is my list of my top five Cornish ice creams …
3. Gwella (new kid on the block)
4. Moomaid of Zennor
5. Kellys (available everywhere)