The Return

The Return

4.0 11
by Victoria Hislop
     
 

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Already a #1 bestseller in the UK, The Return is a captivating new novel of family, love, and betrayal set against a backdrop of civil war, flamenco, and fiery Spanish passion. The author of the beloved international bestseller The Island, Victoria Hislop now transports the reader to Granada, Spain, in a time of historic turmoil. The Return

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Overview

Already a #1 bestseller in the UK, The Return is a captivating new novel of family, love, and betrayal set against a backdrop of civil war, flamenco, and fiery Spanish passion. The author of the beloved international bestseller The Island, Victoria Hislop now transports the reader to Granada, Spain, in a time of historic turmoil. The Return is a colorful and spellbinding saga of a family inspired by music and dance, only to be torn apart by fragile hearts and divided loyalties during the bitter war that brought the dictator Generalissimo Francisco Franco to power.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
For her follow-up to international bestseller The Island, British author Hislop has friends Sonia and Maggie jetting off for flamenco lessons in Granada, Spain. Sonia is escaping monotony and a souring marriage to an older man while Maggie is celebrating her 35th birthday. The trip proves an odyssey of discovery for Sonia, who over a morning cup of coffee is mesmerized by an elderly cafe owner's stories of the Spanish Civil War and the Ramirez family who once owned the cafe and were torn apart during the time of Franco and the upheaval of war. Most intriguing was the story of Mercedes, whose passion for flamenco dancing was matched only by her love for renowned guitarist Javier Montero with whom she performed. Separated from her fractured family, she set out to search for Javier in the chaos of Civil War Spain. Dance holds a place of importance in the tale, especially when Sonia learns the truth about her own mother in a twist that adds suspense to the romance and familial drama. The well-done historical background is a rewarding plus in this fast-paced account of love's power through generations. (Oct.)
Kirkus Reviews
Can a London girl in a miserable marriage find happiness taking dancing lessons in southern Spain?Partly to escape the dourness of urban life and partly at the insistence of her old friend Maggie, Sonia embarks on a semi-spontaneous trip to Granada to literally kick up her heels. Getting away from her stuffy, usually drunk husband James is an added inducement. Sonia's sweet father Jack married a Spanish woman in the 1950s, so Iberian fire is to some extent already in her blood. During her brief initial visit to Granada, Sonia finds a spiritual home. While exploring the city, she comes across El Barril, a cozy cafe run by Miguel, a survivor of the Spanish Civil War, and is intrigued by some posters and photographs of Mercedes, a flamenco dancer, and Ignacio, a young bullfighter. Sonia's jaunt to Granada frames the main narrative: Miguel's long reminiscence of life in Spain shortly before and during the Civil War. It turns out that Mercedes and Ignacio were children of the cafe's former owners, Concha and Pablo Ram'rez, whose family was torn apart by conflicting loyalties during the war. Hislop (The Island, 2007) uses the Ram'rezes to symbolize and personalize the conflict. Miguel takes us back into the past. Along the way he traces the fates of the Pablo, Concha and their four children. Pablo sacrificed himself rather than let his wife go to prison for listening to subversive radio broadcasts; one of their sons was jailed for his sexual orientation as well as his left-leaning politics; Mercedes traveled across the country in search of the love of her life, a flamenco guitarist whose gypsy blood made him of interest to the fascists. Meanwhile, Sonia discovers some secrets that link herfamily to the Ramirezes. A complex, beautiful tale of loss, loyalty and the past recaptured.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061901249
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
10/06/2009
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
82,566
File size:
1 MB

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