The Forgotten Summer

The Forgotten Summer

Book - 2016
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'Secrets, tragedy, hidden pasts and family secrets all set in glorious Provence - I loved this' Santa Montefiore Secrets ripen and fester over a long sweltering summer in France . . . The annual grape harvest at the Cambon family's magnificent vineyard is always a cause for celebration. But not this year. When an accident destroys the crop, leaving the estate facing ruin, Clarisse Cambon knows exactly who to blame - her daughter-in-law Jane. It's just the latest incident in a decades-long feud whose origin both women have concealed from Luc, who struggles to keep his wife and mother on speaking terms. But is Luc the saint he appears to be? When tragedy strikes, Jane is thrown into doubt. What secrets has her husband been keeping? Forced to take charge of the ailing vineyard, Jane uncovers further proof that Luc may not be the man she fell in love with twenty years ago. And, worse still, she knows that her old enemy Clarisse is the only one who knows the truth . . . For fans of Santa Montefiore and Victoria Hislop, The Forgotten Summer is an atmospheric tale of secrets, forbidden passion and heartbreak. Praise for The Forgotten Summer 'A lovely book packed with the sunshine, scents and savours of the south of France. Plenty of page-turning drama but also mouthwatering descriptions of Paris and Provence. Enough to make you rush straight to the Eurostar' Daily Mail 'Secrets, tragedy, hidden pasts and family secrets all set in glorious Provence - I loved this' Santa Montefiore 'This atmospheric read will whisk you straight to the South of France as you become immersed in the tale of secrets and heartbreak' Marie Claire
Publisher: London : Michael Joseph, 2016.
ISBN: 9780718183080
Branch Call Number: FIC Drink
Characteristics: 422 pages ; 25 cm

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Enjoyable and well written, but LONG as in 400+ pages and seemed to take forever to finish. The author obviously loves France, but in the lengthy chapters the reader gets a very full immersion of french culture, country side, birds, plants and then over again in the next chapter. If I was an artist, I think I could paint a beautiful picture from the descriptive words in the book.

c
CecileSune
Jun 03, 2016

Jane and Luc have been married for several years. Jane is a shy translator from England, and Luc is a passionate French documentary filmmaker. They share their time between London and the South of France where Luc’s mother is running a wine estate. When he suddenly has an accident, Jane discovers that her husband had a few secrets of his own. Now she has to piece her life back together, while dealing with her very difficult mother-in-law, Clarisse, a Pied Noir who settled in France after the Algerian War of Independence.

I loved Carol Drinkwater’s Olive series where she wrote about her experience moving to France and buying an olive farm in Provence. So I was curious to read one of her books of fiction. In The Forgotten Summer, the author’s love of Provence shines through, as she writes beautiful descriptions of the South of France. However, these descriptions sometimes run a tad too long, and repetitions drag down the story.

The book deals with the Algerian War of Independence from France (1954-1962), a pivotal moment in French history. I found this part of the novel especially interesting, and I would have liked to know more about the Secret Armed Organization, a far-right movement that carried out bombings and assassinations in order to try to keep Algeria under French rule. Nevertheless, even though the book was uneven, I was genuinely interested in Jane’s fate, and the ending was satisfying. I must say though that I preferred Carol Drinkwater’s Olive series.

The Forgotten Summer was sent to me for free in exchange for an honest review.

Please go to my blog, Cecile Sune - Bookobsessed, if you would like to read more reviews or discover fun facts about books and authors.

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