It Will Take Your Breath Away: Review of The Daughter of Victory Lights by Kerri Turner

It Will Take Your Breath Away: Review of The Daughter of Victory Lights by Kerri Turner

Kerri Turner is making her name in historical fiction. The Daughter of Victory Lights is completely enthralling.

1945: During the war, Evelyn Bell felt useful. She was volunteering in an all-female searchlight regiment, protecting Londoners from the German bobs threatening their lives and city. But once the war is finished, Evelyn is supposed to go back to her rigid domestic life. But Evelyn has always wanted more, much to the chagrin of her older sister. When Evelyn comes across a secret night-time show hidden on a boat in the middle of the Thames, she knows she has found her opportunity to shine again. Entranced by the risqué performances, Evelyn becomes a part of the misfit crew and sets sail for a new adventure, far from her dreary future in London.

In 1963, young Lucy is unloved and unwanted. Her aunt has no time for her and only grudgingly houses her. A mysterious stranger calls upon the house, saying he knows Lucy’s mother, and soon Lucy is spirited away to the Isle of Wight. On the island she becomes part of an eclectic but loving family of ex-performers and is fed titbits of information about her mother.  But she soon realises that these people know more than they are letting on, and Lucy tries to discover the truth of just who Evelyn Bell was.

The Daughter of Victory Lights is the story of one woman’s determined grab for freedom after WW2, in an era of censorship and loss of female agency. It is wonderful to read of the women in our history who bucked the trend of marriage and went out on their own, taking the consequences of their decisions. Evelyn is a spectacular character, and you are invested in her from the very first page. Supported by a cast of wonderful characters, Turner’s writing transports you into the time periods she is describing.

The vibrant setting of the story also plays a major part in this narrative. With the majority of the story occurring on an old boat, Evelyn, and the reader, get to experience life on the ocean and all the highs and lows that brings. I loved that the shows on the boat were secret, hiding from the law, due to their risqué dances and costumes. Reading a book where you can be a little rebellious is always a great idea! Kerri Turner will be on my list of authors to read now, with beautifully plotted storylines and engaging characters resulting in a spectacular novel. The Daughter of Victory Lights took my breath away.

Buy a copy here

 

 

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            Publisher details

            The Daughter of Victory Lights
            Author
            Kerri Turner
            Publisher
            HarperCollins
            Genres
            Australian Fiction, Mystery
            Released
            20 January, 2020

            Synopsis

            An enthralling story of one woman's determined grab for freedom after WW2 from a talented new Australian voice.'PART CABARET, PART BURLESQUE, AND LIKE NOTHING YOU'VE EVER SEEN BEFORE! GENTLEMEN, AND LADIES IF YOU'VE DARED TO COME, WELCOME TO ...'There was a pause, and Evelyn sensed those around her leaning forward in anticipation.'THE VICTORY!'1945: After the thrill and danger of volunteering in an all-female searchlight regiment protecting Londoners from German bombers overhead, Evelyn Bell is secretly dismayed to be sent back to her rigid domestic life when the war is over. But then she comes across a secret night-time show, hidden from the law on a boat in the middle of the Thames. Entranced by the risque and lively performance, she grabs the opportunity to join the misfit crew and escape her dreary future.At first the Victory travels from port to port to raucous applause, but as the shows get bigger and bigger, so too does the risks the performers are driven to take, as well as the growing emotional complications among the crew. Until one desperate night ...1963: Lucy, an unloved and unwanted little girl, is rescued by a mysterious stranger who says he knows her mother. On the Isle of Wight, Lucy is welcomed into an eclectic family of ex-performers. She is showered with kindness and love, but gradually it becomes clear that there are secrets they refuse to share. Who is Evelyn Bell?
            Kerri Turner
            About the author

            Kerri Turner

            The Last Days of the Romanov Dancers, my debut novel, is being released by HQ Fiction in January 2019.A second historical fiction novel, The Daughter of Victory Lights, is scheduled for release in early 2020.​In 2017 I signed with literary agent Haylee Nash of The Nash Agency. In prior years, my short stories have been published by Reflex Fiction, Boolarong Press, Catchfire Press, Stringybark, Underground Writers, and as part of the Dangerous Women Project.My author influences include (but are not limited to) Kate Forsyth, Sara Gruen, Belinda Alexandra, Hazel Gaynor, Ken Follett, Eli Brown, and Kate Morton. I also have a special fondness for Lorna Hill, particularly her 'Sadler's Wells' series, which I have collected since childhood.When not writing or reading, I can usually be found teaching ballet and tap dancing, baking sweet treats, or spending time with my husband and my miniature schnauzer Nelson.​​​

            Books by Kerri Turner

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