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Review by Suze
The Second World War changed the lives of many people. In 1943 Adele and her identical twin sister Amelia are old enough to become Wrens. Because of the different directions they choose they will be separated for the first time. Adele will miss her sister, as Amelia is her other half, but she will also finally experience the freedom of being just herself, not part of a duo seen as one. Adele is sensible and Amelia is daring. When Adele is being betrayed in the worst possible way she will never be the same. Even seventy years later the past remains a raw wound. What happened to her that caused her so much grief and changed the direction of her life forever?
The Returning Tide is an impressive story. I love books about sisters and I was hooked from the first page. I immediately liked Adele, she's sweet, sympathetic and brave. She once loved with all her heart and I had tears in my eyes when I read about what she had to go through. Her story is fascinating, moving and multilayered and it kept me on the edge of my seat. I had tears in my eyes when I read both the beginning and the ending of the story.
Liz Fenwick knows how to build tension and her stories are always interesting as well as gripping. The Returning Tide is set in the past and the present. Cornwall is the main location, but parts of the present are taking place in America. Both settings are beautiful and I love Liz Fenwick's vivid descriptions that make everything come to life incredibly well. I could almost smell the sea and enjoyed seeing the surroundings through the eyes of her main characters. I could easily feel the love she has for them and that makes them extra wonderful. I could feel their pain, their love and their sorrows. Home is an important subject for them and Liz Fenwick's vision of what it entails is captivating, which is something I absolutely love about her books.
The Returning Tide is such a special story. The Second World War hugely influenced people. Liz Fenwick perfectly captured the atmosphere with the intense sadness on one side and the will to live and seize the day on the other. Being separated from loved ones is hard and living for the moment is the only way to keep going for a lot of people. I loved how Liz Fenwick uses these strong feelings as a solid basis for a terrific story. Her writing is engaging, meaningful, poignant and honest. There are deep wounds and immense joy and experiencing what the characters are going through was both magnificent and heartbreaking at the same time.
I'm a big fan of stories about family secrets and The Returning Tide is a riveting one with plenty of surprising twists and turns. It's clear from the beginning that something tragic happened to Adele and Amelia and Liz Fenwick slowly lets her readers know the exact details. The story is a combination of shocking, sad, intriguing and thrilling scenes. Secrets tend to come out and when they do they can have a huge impact and that's exactly what happens in this book. Liz Fenwick has written a fantastic novel, The Returning Tide is a story that will stay with me for a long time.
If you love reading intriguing family stories that are very well written and multilayered you should definitely read The Returning Tide.
Five Favourite Spots in Cornwall
by Liz Fenwick
I’m always stumped when I’m asked for my top five or ten favourite places in Cornwall. It would be easier to say what I don’t like… tails back getting into the Duchy is certainly up there. But I love my adopted home and in different seasons I have different favourites. But here is my top five for now – I hold onto the right to change them in the near future maybe even tomorrow!
1. The sunset viewed from the top of Godolphin Hill…from this primitive place you can see to the heart of Cornwall behind you, the Lizard, St Michaels Mount and the to the west St Ives Bay. It’s as if the world is at your feet as you watch the sun sink into the sea…pure magic.
2. Prussia Cove – we took this walk for the first time in January on a day so bright and clear it hurt. You wind your way through the private estate past enchanting cottages to the cove that hints at smugglers and long years of fishing. A short climb/walk along the coast brings you to deserted beaches and massive caves…if they could only talk.
3. Frenchman’s Creek…it is a place that the world forgot or feels that way. Whether you walk along its banks in spring - when bluebells are just appearing and their colour is impossible to capture somewhere between blue and purple and possibly heaven, or in twilight when the tide is in and you are sure that you are not alone despite the echoing silence because surely fairies hide among the twisted branches bending down to the creek…it is the most special place.
4. St Ives. I could rave about the light and the colour of the sea but everyone does that and deservedly so. I love to wander with a plan and see where I find myself on the twisting lanes filled with surprising views. St Ives for me is best in the morning before it’s too busy and as a special treat breakfast on the beach at Porthminster Beach Café.
5. Lizard Point…the power of the sea, the size of the cliffs, the call of the choughs and playful sight of a seal all make this a unique. My family is mildly obsessed with visiting the UK’s most southerly point when the weather is fierce and you realise how small we are compared to natures almighty strength.
About Liz Fenwick
Writer, ex-pat expert, wife, mother of three, and dreamer turned doer….
Award winning author of The Cornish House, A Cornish Affair, A Cornish Stranger Sky, Under A Cornish and a novella – A Cornish Christmas Carol. After ten international moves, I’m a bit of a global nomad. It’s no wonder my heart remains in Cornwall.
The Returning Tide is out on the 23rd of March 2017 and I’m currently writing the next book.
My books are available in Dutch, Germany, Portuguese, French, Estonia, Norwegian, Danish, Turkish, Swedish, Latvian, Serbian and Czech.