24 Apr 2014

THE VISITORS.

THE VISITORS by REBECCA MASCULL.

SOURCE: A Blog win courtesy of Lindsay over at THE LITTLE READER LIBRARY with thanks to the author, Rebecca, who not only supplied the book but kindly sent me some promotional bookmarks.

Imagine if you couldn't see couldn't hear couldn't speak...Then one day somebody took your hand and opened up the world to you.

Adeliza Golding is a deaf-blind girl, born in late Victorian England on her father's hop farm. Unable to interact with her loving family, she exists in a world of darkness and confusion; her only communication is with the ghosts she speaks to in her head, who she has christened the Visitors. One day she runs out into the fields and a young hop-picker, Lottie, grabs her hand and starts drawing shapes in it. Finally Liza can communicate. 

Her friendship with her teacher and with Lottie's beloved brother Caleb leads her from the hop gardens and oyster beds of Kent to the dusty veldt of South Africa and the Boer War, and ultimately to the truth about the Visitors.
..... Outer back cover

FIRST SENTENCE {Chapter 1}:My name is Adeliza Golding.

MEMORABLE MOMENT {Page 29}: She takes me in her arms and holds me tightly. I am nearly eight years old and it is my first hug with Mother.

MY THOUGHTS: What a lovely cover. Simple and yet eye-catching, its especially perfect given the Victorian setting of the story.

Historical fiction combined with a tender love story, a murder and a good old-fashioned ghost story that, incredibly atmospheric, far from being in any way scary I actually found immensely touching. This is a wonderful debut novel by an author well worth looking out for.

The moving story of a young girls emergence into adulthood at the end of the Victorian era. I was particularly impressed by the authors ability to get inside the thoughts and feelings of a deaf-blind girl who, her temper fuelled by frustration, finds herself increasingly isolated until her world is opened up thanks largely to the friendship and tutorship of a young hop picker.

A wonderful tale of abiding friendships that perhaps could have verged on the overly sweet if it weren't for the contrast between the relationship shared by Adeliza/Liza and Lottie and that enjoyed by Liza and Lottie's brother, Caleb.

A flawed character who seemingly always sees 'the grass as being greener' it is Caleb's enlistment into the Boer War that though very interesting from a historical point of view proved the least compelling aspect of the novel for me. Written in letter form, not my favourite type of narration it has to be said, I'm afraid it failed to engage me in the same way as the rest of the novel.

Liza's story aside, strangely enough given that historical novels with a supernatural element rarely 'do it for me' it was actually the ghost story that I found most absorbing. Incredibly intriguing, though gripped from the start I admit that at times I did find myself wondering just where (if anywhere) it was leading and whilst I don't want to give anything away I will say stick with it to anyone struggling with this side of the book as chances are you won't be disappointed.



Copyright: Tracy Terry @ Pen and Paper. All original content on http://pettywitter.blogspot.co.uk/ is created by the website owner, including but not limited to text, design, code, images, photographs and videos are considered to be the Intellectual Property of the website owner, whether copyrighted or not, and are protected by DMCA Protection Services using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act Title 17 Chapter 512 (c)(3). Reproduction or re-publication of this content is prohibited without permission. In addition I would also urge that if you are reading this on any other page you contact the original blog owner/reviewer.

20 comments:

Brandi Kosiner said...

The tender love story aspect really appeals to me even though I don't read much HF.

Claudine G. said...

Sounds dark and excellent. I'll be looking for this book soon.

Sherry Ellis said...

This sounds like a really good book. I'll have to put it on my list.

Barbara Fisher said...

Hi Tracy, The ghost story aspect really appeals to me. I will definitely be looking out for a copy.
Congratulations on your win – what a lovely prize.

Shooting Stars Mag said...

glad you ended up liking this one overall. I think the ghost aspect would be the most interesting to me too.

Camila Rafaela Felippi said...

What's the best ghost story did you read? Maybe I'll read one for my English homework!

Suko said...

Quite an endorsement! I need to keep an eye out for this one, Tracy!

Kelly said...

At first this sounded like a Victorian version of Helen Keller's story! (The Miracle Worker)

I believe it's one I might enjoy.

Brian Joseph said...

This seems to be a very unique plot for a ghost story. It seems clever and has a lot of potential. So many books are characterized by cookie cutter plots, that hearing about something like this is refreshing.

Aunt Mary said...

Again a beautiful review, The book sounds interesting :)

Tracy Terry said...

Thanks to you all for stopping by. A remarkable book, I really enjoyed it.

As I replied to Camila I'm not a big fan of the traditional 'ghost' story as I scare to easily however one of my favourites recently was Isabel's Skin.

http://pettywitter.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/isabels-skin.html

Rachna Chhabria said...

This books sounds wonderful. I will check it on Amazon and buy it for my Kindle.

Melliane said...

Oh I didn't know this one but you're right the cover is really nice, so simple but also perfect. I wouldn't have expected a story like that but it sounds perfect for me and I love Victorian settings! I think it's always so interesting. Thanks for introducing me to the author.

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Oh I'm an ending girl so as long as it pays out, I will stick to it! Thanks for bringing this one to my attention.

Stephanie Faris said...

That is a very classy, elegant cover. It says everything about the book, even incorporating a little of the haunted element...

Heather said...

I'm with you, that cover is most appealing. Now you have me pondering these ghosts and why the little girl would sense them and not find that strange. hmmm

Stephanie@Fairday's Blog said...

I absolutely love this cover! The book sounds equally delightful. I can't wait to pick it up! Thanks for sharing. :)

Yvonne@fiction-books said...

Hi Tracy,

This sounds like a captivating and emotional read, definitely one for my TBR pile. I don't know which aspect of the story interests me the most, but I would be intrigued to know whether the author has first hand experience of the deaf/blind scenario, which you say she writes about with such authority. I did try to find out a bit more about her, but could only establish that she worked in the education sectre before becoming a writer, so perhaps it was in the 'special needs' environment?

To lose one or the other of those senses would be devastating, but I guess to someone born that way, it is simply the norm and a fact of their lives. We take so much for granted, including being able to read this captivating story.

Well Done on your win and thanks for a lovely thoughtful review,

Yvonne

Mary (Bookfan) said...

Yes, lovely cover. And I loved your review!

Literary Feline said...

I really like the cover too, Tracy.

I am glad to hear you enjoyed this one--I'm intrigued.