The Island

The Island

by Victoria Hislop
4.4 72

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Island 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 72 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What an unexpected find this book was!!... I just got back from visiting Crete, Greece and all the places that the author mentioned in her book. It put me back on the island with such vivid detail and I only wished I could have read this book before I went so I could have enjoyed seeing 'The Leper's Island' and all the villages through more enlightened eyes. I am an avid reader and just think this author is wonderful.. Keep going.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This wonderful book is at once chick lit,mystery,& travelogue. Set in both todays world,& the Greece of 60 years ago, it is a moving & passionate novel about a womans search for the truth of her mothers past. Don't be put off by the fact it is set on Spiralonga a small Island off Crete, which was a leper colony until the 50's, & which is integral to the story. This is my book of the year so far. An absolute pleasure to read
SheilaDeeth More than 1 year ago
Beautifully imagined, well-researched and evocatively told, Victoria Hislop's The Island recreates a leper colony of the 1930s and follows its inmates and neighbors on the Island of Crete through the Second World War to the present day. The theme of searching for identity is well-served as the author follows characters whose identities have been stolen by disease-some losing their physical self-image, others half-destroyed mentally by loss of family and friends. The agony of ostracism, the fear of ever-present death and the struggle to create a life where life is already failing are made chillingly real. The kindness and cruelty of strangers threads the tale. And the modern-day story of a young woman searching for her own identity, seeking her past and her future, makes a pleasing wrapper. The writing changes point of view with unsettling fluidity; the reader's certainty of characters' innermost thoughts creating an intriguing contrast with the modern-day protagonist's uncertainties about her mother and her lover. Side-stories, the flirtatious sister, the lost little boy, even soldiers in the war, all fold together creating a fine sense of people and place, a picture of quiet society still hiding in the warmth of Cretan sunshine and the dust of forgotten lanes. Secrets hurt, the past can't be changed, but forgiveness and the choice to move forwards imbue the tale with a hopeful tone. Meanwhile the mystery of leprosy becomes something real that I'm glad to know more about. At 473 pages this is a long novel to be savored slowly, but it's a fascinating tale leaving a lingering taste of sunshine and mystery. Disclosure: I borrowed this book from a friend of my mother's in England.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is beautifully written and so compelling from start to finish. Victoria Hislop pulls at the heartstrings and I couldn't keep myself from crying at the sad parts and rooting for the characters in their triumphs. I would reccomend this to anyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What an intense, beautiful and touching story. Out of 97 books on my Nook this was by far the best. So sad how people viewed leprosy. My heart went out to so many of the characters. The author did an amazing job!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was more about a families struggle to fight a battle with a disease the impacted many in the 1900's. Leprosy is not a disease many of us think existed Europe. This tiny island off of Crete was a place those infected by this disease, that had no cure, were imprisoned on during the 1900's was more than many expected. For those on the island it became a refuse, and for those who had loved ones there, it became a place of no return. The Island begins slowly and a bit fragmented but allows the reader to see leprosy from a different view point. As one family member finds herself infected, she travels to the place where no one returns, only to find the unexpected. Her family lives on without her but does not forget her. As others from her small village join her, their lives change. While the story of those infected with leprosy offers a much different story from what many knew, they still depended on others to survive. But those on the island did more than survive, they flourished. The book is a bit rough with some unbelievable character sketches but overall the main characters hold their own. The conclusion is a bit odd and misplaced with the overall story line, but the I would still recommend this book for book clubs. It offers insight to the impact and struggle of those with leprosy and the family members left behind of this tragic disease.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have just finished reading this book and I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed the adventure. I have read much about Leper colonies in Hawaii but had not thought about it in other parts of the world. Between that and the wonderful story of Sophia and her family history and her wonderful friends on Crete it was a terrific read. The characters were so inviting and alive, even those who were not necessarily sympathetic.There was so much warmth in this story. I could not put it down.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A fabulous story that kept me up all night turning the pages! A combo of historical fiction, with suspense, love, mystery all thrown in!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this very interesting book. I sure learned a lot about leprosy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the first Victoria Hislop book I have read but it certainly won't be the last. I found this book to be incredibly interesting and emotionally moving. I hated that it had to end but I so wanted to find out what happened. I have already purchased another book by this author and can't wait to get started. Stephanie Clanahan
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A rich, beautiful story with wonderful characters. The author gives the reader an amazing look into what life was like in a leper colony as well as how the disease ripped families apart. I will read this book again and again.
PierresFamily More than 1 year ago
This book will stay with me a long time, and is going to spoil me for other books! Well-developed characters. I became so invested with them, that I felt literal pain when one of them was crying. It was interesting to learn about the history not only of Crete, but also about the victims of leprosy, who were banished to "the island." But all is not as it seems there. That is all I will say, not wishing to give a spoiler for one of the best books I have ever read. Publisher, please note: For future books by this author, a map noting locales would have been helpful! Very moving multi-generational saga.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Disappointing
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book the story was terrific.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well written, fully fleshed characters, a sense of being there and experiencing the lives and surroundings of people you come to care about. I will read this book again.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would call this a 'must read'...a touching and compelling book, evoking surprising tenderness and empathy for lepers and what they must go through.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago