- Headline Publishing Group
- Publication Date:
- 10 April 2006
- Modern & Contemporary
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Very few books have touched my heart as much as this one did. I just loved reading this book. To start with, I found this book out of the blue. When I picked this book up, I had no clue who the author was (Now I know a lot, did a bit of Bing!) and what the premise of the novel was. Now, I am ever so glad that I picked it up. The book is so touching, filled with laughter, pain, love and life! I was so into the book that I couldnt keep wondering what would happen next. I really wished this book wouldn't end.Its a story of a girl called Alexis who sets out to learn more about her family history. She ends up learning the close relationship her family has had with leprosy and how the disease wrecked her family apart. All the characters in the book are so well thought out and so well written about. The author does just a fabulous job of helping us construct the character's image in our minds. I really like Maria's character. Now I cannot wait to go to Spinalonga! Wish, I get that opportunity.I loved the book so much that I actually forced my girlfriend to read it too and she was equally pleased with the book.I highly recommend this book.
This is a book filled with much sadness but also with much joy. Through the telling of this story we discover how people react when they are faced with the fragile balance between love and hate, forgiveness and the burden of regret.On the Cretan island of Plaka, many families have been touched by the spectre of leprosy. It hovers over the island, filling the inhabitants with dread, bringing out caring and love in many, fear and loathing in others. Lepers beset by the disease on Plaka or or other nearby islands, are sent to the island of Spinalonga, always within sight of Plaka, but a world unto itself. There always seems to be two stories going on, but connected in some way to the other. The story begins when Alexis goes to Plaka to uncover her mother's past. What she discovers both shocks her and determines her future.What I enjoyed most about "The Island" was the very unique writing style of the author. One of the few drawbacks to reading constantly is finding that so many authors write in styles similar to another author. It is always a joy to discover an author whose style "stands out". Hislop's empathetic prose does not interfere with the telling of the story, but rather adds to the sense of realism. The reader feels as though they are experiencing the heartbreak of the patient suffering from leprosy or a family member losing their loved one as the "patient" goes to live on the lepers island. They are so close and yet so far away on Spinalonga. The inhabitants of the lepers island set up their own government and public works, have their own elections and try with what little they have to make the island their "home".In another example of the choices that life constantly offers us, a relationship develops between one of the doctors and a patient. This development is unusual because there is rarely any kind of commitment between lepers and those free of the disease because of the impossibility of a future together. But "The Island " is one of those rare books that reminds us of the balance between hope and despair and revealed through dire circumstances, that life offers us if we dare to embrace the opportunity.I recommend this as a quick read-473 pages-of great depth and good writing.
Excellent...a great plot and the sort of book that you can picture it as if you are familiar with the setting would highly recommend.
Alexis is about to go on holiday with her boyfriend, to the country of her mother's birth Greece. She knows nothing about her heritage and suggests that she might visit the village her mother was born in. Armed with a letter to one of her mother's friends Alexis embarks on a journey that she will never forget.Having reached Crete she leaves her boyfriend heads to the village. She embarks on a trip to the nearby deserted island of Spinalonga, which she establishes is a former leper colony. She spends a few hours there and heads back to the village to seek out her mother's friend. She meets up with Fortini who then shares with her the loves and lives of her mother and the generations that went before her and the connection the family has to Spinalonga.This was a fabulous read. Read over the course of 24 hours. I could barely put down and did so reluctantly.A wonderfully written book and is recommended.
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