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Ratings and Book Reviews (2 7 star ratings
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  • 2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    Fabulous new series!

    I was totally blown away by this first book in Philippa Gregory's new series The fairmile. It takes place during England's civil war but unlike her other series the story dwells not on royalty but on a common woman name Alinor a descendant of wise women barely surviving in poverty with 2 children and a man, James, who she meets one night in secret. Though she knows its dangerous she saves his life, not once but twice, but what will happen when those rumours of witchcraft begin to spread about Alinor? As I said I totally loved this book and can't wait for 2nd book!!!
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    A history of our ancestors

    The book that I have been most looking forward to reading this year is Tidelands by Philippa Gregory. While Gregory has quite a reputation for her historical fiction about royalty, my favorite has long been The Lady of the Rivers, who is just the mother of a queen. I was hoping Tidelands would be more like The Lady of the Rivers, and I am delighted to say that it was. What I liked most about this story is the sense of the place and time that Philippa Gregory does so well. I could see the tidelands clearly in my mind, and I felt like I knew Alinor and her children well. Even her brother’s dog was a memorable character. And the plot about these people isolated at the end of the country was interesting as it intersected the political world. One of the main characters, James Summer, was a spy for the Royalists and we see King Charles I as a character, though only briefly. I liked the fact that even though the main character is a poor woman, we are still learning about what is going on in politics. And how those things effect all people and can unite and divide them. And I am excited that this is going to be a series about the ordinary people that most of us call our ancestors. Overall, Tidelands is a very quiet story, in that there is not really all that much that happens, and yet, so much happens. My main criticism is that there are things that get repetitive, Alinor especially repeats things all the time. Sometimes for Alinor it is a means of rehearsing good things, or reinforcing an important narrative. But sometimes the repetition with nothing added gets to be a bit too much and you wish for something new to happen in the plot, instead of just waiting, waiting. A second criticism is that the chapters are very uneven (at least in my ARC, maybe they fixed that in the final version). There were chapters that would take 2 minutes to read and one that was 2.5 hours long on my ebook reader. I couldn’t really understand the chapter divisions, and the 2.5 hour long one seemed like an editing error. In summary, if you are looking for a book with a lot of excitement and action, this isn’t the book for you. There is some tension throughout the book, which is what kept me reading, so I wouldn’t call it boring, it just isn’t high drama. So, if unplugging and enjoying history is your jam or you are already a Philippa Gregory fan, this is a good one. I received an Advanced Reader Copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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