In a nutshell, this is the story of a mixed race young woman in Jamaica, 1753. It includes a lot of historical fact woven into the story. It is drawn from the history of Jamaica and the slaves who lived there.
Deirdre is the daughter of an Englishwoman and a slave. Hence, there is your story. She is raised by her mother and stepfather and grows up well-loved by both in a privileged environment. Her parents have slaves but they are the best treated and cared for slaves on the island. This leads to a little animosity on the part of the other plantation owners. However, they are still well liked. Deirdre comes of age and falls in love with a young doctor, Victor. They marry and depart for Saint-Domingue on Hispaniola. Their hope is that Deirdre can live a life free of the stigma that a mixed background brings her. There is another protagonist in this story who also wishes for a new life. She is not privileged and not cared for. I will stop there, in case you are inclined to read this book.
I was not so much intrigued as I read this. It did not have the character development that I look for to make the characters seem real and absorb my attention. It is well written, though not deep. It is one of many stories from history that are much the same. If you love Caribbean history and are eager to always read fiction about it, then you will like this book. I love settings in a tropical locale and I love history, but this just did not strike a cord with me. In fact, I was not able to make myself read all the way through it. I think when I saw the familiar story line taking place, my attention started to wander. I am willing to say it is probably a good read for many but did not turn out to be my cup of tea.
This is my first read of a Sarah Lark novel and I am not sure I will try another one. If you are a fan, you will want to pick up a copy of this and get started.
I give Island of the Red Mangroves three stars. I received a free e-book copy of this novel from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My opinion is my own. My thanks to them for the opportunity to read and review.
You can read more about this book and author at NetGalley
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