Wednesday 6 September 2017

Juliana: by Vanda

Volume 1: 1941 - 1944

Amazon UK £2.32 £10.22
Amazon US $2.95 $14.95
Amazon CA $19.84

Family Saga / LGBT

It’s been a while since a book got under my skin so quickly. The excitability, the hope, the determination and the vulnerability of youth are beautifully depicted in our heroine Al/Alice and in the friends around her who join her to make a go at their acting and writing careers in New York. 

Naïve country bumpkins that they are, they possess something else, some spirit that captures the reader as much as it captures Max, the theatre producer who is willing to take them under their wings. I trembled with the four youngsters as they get to find out whether Max is in fact someone they can trust.

All the while the author shows us the aftermath of the big depression. This focus on America before and during the war without the usual excessive foreboding of WWII was refreshing to me as a European. As a gay man I was particularly interested in the life of gay characters during that period and found this exceedingly well done.

The biggest achievement however has to be the chemistry between the two lovers, Al and Julianna. Not everything that goes on between them always makes perfect sense, but so is the nature of forbidden and dangerous love. I found the tension between them, the erotic sparks, seriously breath taking.

With many sub plots and side characters involved this is a rich and rewarding read that I shall treasure and read again. Very well done.

© Christoph Fischer

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  1. Nice review! I confess, I have this book on my iPad (the author did a promo a while back on a women's fiction Facebook group I belong to so I snagged a copy) but haven't read it yet. I think your review just made me bump it up on my TBR list :-).


  2. thank you - it's good to know that Discovering Diamonds is serving the purpose we intended it for!


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