Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Book Review -- Under the Jeweled Sky

Under the Jeweled Sky
Under the Jeweled Sky by Alison McQueen
My enjoyment rating: 4 of 5 stars
Hangover rating: 4
Source:  Received review copy from publisher; was not compensated in any other way for my review.
Genre: Fiction; historical fiction; women's fiction
Objectionable material:  None

What would you do for love? To what lengths would you travel?

Sophie Schofield, a young British colonialist living with her parents in India after WWII, learns that true love knows no boundaries, even if it is love for a servant boy within the maharaja's palace, for whom she is forbidden to see.

Author Alison McQueen, in epic form, recreates the life of British colonialism in India with a story that is as vast as the country itself.

I was swept away by the love story of Sophie and Jag, the boy she loved and would spend her life yearning for.

I was transported back to a time, that I knew very little about, when India gained Independence from Britain and chaos and mayhem reined. I felt like I'd traveled the entire country with both Sophie and Jag as their lives transversed in unexpected, and sometimes very tragic ways.

But where the story (and author) truly shined, was when Sophie, in the midst of an unplanned pregnancy, expresses unyielding love and grief over a baby that would be taken away from her, for no other reason than she was unmarried and the child was of mix race. It was a beautiful, if not tragic scene that made this mother (and adoptee) weep.

In the tradition of The Thorn Birds, where characters, forbidden love, and a continent play such a vital role, Under the Jeweled Sky, was an unexpected, but treasured gem.