Friday 5 January 2018

A Discovering Diamonds review of A Painted Samovar by Sarah Roux

A Discovering Diamonds Review of: A Painted Samovar by Sarah Roux

Amazon UK £1.99 £7.99
Amazon US $2.58 $10.00
Amazon CA $12.47

Military / Family Drama / Jewish history
WW1 / Russian Revolution
London/Russia / Japan

This is the moving and epic saga of one man’s involvement in the Manchurian conflict between Russia and Japan and then in WW1 / the Russian Revolution. It is a story of multiple challenges and the will to persevere.

The main story is nicely surrounded by scenes in London, 1967, when a former friend arrives at the family home to visit the now deceased Isaac.

The story then jumps back to 1905 as Isaac fights against the Japanese. The portrayal of the war scenes and Isaac’s perspective of it is very well done; the situation of Jews in Tsarist Russia and their culture seems well-researched and authentic and is very fascinating.

The narrative jumps to the East End of London in 1912, where - now a cabinetmaker - Isaac founds his family. Again, I enjoyed the detailed scene setting and the well-chosen characters. Isaac faces deportation back to Russia which separates him from his family. The rest of the novel is his struggle to return to them.

This is a compelling and inspiring read, sometimes harrowing, and historically rich, bringing to my attention yet another lesser-known fate, shared by some 4,000 people. Knowing that this is inspired by the author’s own family makes the story all the more powerful and captivating.

Well done.

© Christoph Fischer

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