by J H Wallace


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781783013739
Publication date: 04/14/2014
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.58(d)

About the Author

J.H. Wallace briefly explored the academic life, studying music at Oxford University for a year before decamping to the Mediterranean in search of adventure. Soon based in Antibes, she became a cordon bleu cook on luxury yachts along the Med, adept at catering to wealthy and demanding charterers in the confined space of a yacht's galley.
In the early 1980s she met her husband Dennis, and together they crewed yachts for another 20 years, before celebrating retirement with a six-year circumnavigation of the globe in their sailing yacht Aurora of Polruan. They finally settled on the Aegean coast of Turkey, by which time they had crossed the Atlantic four times and the Pacific once, visiting over 60 different countries.
A gifted musician, in later years she indulged her passion for singing, and delighted audiences of friends with her renderings of arias from Italian opera. She also wrote a number of travel articles which were published in yachting magazines, and several works of fiction. Lanzarote is her first novel.

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Lanzarote 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Milagro is young, beautiful and rebellious. She feels stifled in the repressive atmosphere of a small town on the island of Lanzarote in the early 1700s. Men can't keep their hands off her, but she rebuffs them all, until she meets Felipe, a young Guanche fisherman (the Guanches were the original inhabitants of  the Canary Islands before the Spaniards invaded in the 15th century). With Felipe everything feels different and she lets him seduce her, then runs off to be with him when she falls pregnant with his child. It's downhill from there on - already an outcast from the middle class society she was born into, her life, like that of every other islander, is brought to ruins by the volcanic eruptions which devastate the island. Milagro survives, but her survival is such that one feels that death might have been the better option. This graphic, moving, and ultimately cathartic novel impressed me no end. You feel for Milagro but you are infuriated by her ability to make all the wrong decisions. Characters, scenes, the violence of the volcanic eruptions are all drawn with graphic power. The narrative has an almost sickening pace as one disaster follows another, before the final, peaceful resolution. But there is an interesting conceptual framework underlying the novel - the contrast between the rural superstition and religious dogma which govern the lives of the islanders, and the scientific rationalism represented by the visiting vulcanologist who tries to make sense of the events years afterwards.  An original book, well worth reading.