REVIEW: THE OLIVE TREE BY LUCINDA RILEY

Due to time restraints while I work on my own novel, reviews on this site will now comprise a book blurb and a short response.

9781509824762A book for lovers of romantic fiction – but be warned: it’s nearly 600 pages. Here’s the blurb:

“It is said that anyone who comes to stay at ‘Pandora’ for the first time will fall in love . . .”

It has been twenty-four years since a young Helena spent a magical holiday in Cyprus, where she fell in love for the first time. When the now crumbling house, ‘Pandora’, is left to her by her godfather, she returns to spend the summer there with her family.

Yet, as soon as Helena arrives at ‘Pandora’, she knows that its idyllic beauty masks a web of secrets that she has kept from William, her husband, and Alex, her son. At the difficult age of thirteen, Alex is torn between protecting his beloved mother, and growing up. And equally, desperate to learn the truth about his real father…

When, by chance, Helena meets her childhood sweetheart, a chain of events is set in motion that threatens to make her past and present collide. Both Helena and Alex know that life will never be the same, once Pandora’s secrets have been revealed . . .

Despite it’s hefty weight, The Olive Tree is a relatively lightweight read, brimming with secrets,┬áconflict and second chances, but never quite really squeezing my heart. Secrets build upon secrets and the inevitable reveal, albeit in bits and pieces, means hurt and heartache. For me, it was a good comfort read, but the characters and their stories didn’t linger. Despite some of the issues that were raised, it just didn’t go deep enough to make this a “love it” book.

Available from good bookstores (RRP $29.99AUD). My copy was courtesy of Pan Macmillan.