Treachery and theft lead to death – and love
1940. Teresa Bichard and her baby are sent by her beloved husband, Leo, to England as the Germans draw closer to Guernsey. Days later they invade…
1942. Leo, of Jewish descent, is betrayed to the Germans and is sent to a concentration camp, never to return.
1945. Teresa returns to find Leo did not survive and the family’s valuable art collection, including a Renoir, is missing. Heartbroken, she returns to England.
2011. Nigel and his twin Fiona, buy a long-established antique shop in Guernsey and during a refit, find a hidden stash of paintings, including what appears to be a Renoir.
Days later, Fiona finds Nigel dead, an apparent suicide. Refusing to accept the verdict, a distraught Fiona employs a detective to help her discover the truth…
Searching for the rightful owner of the painting brings Fiona close to someone who opens a chink in her broken heart. Can she answer some crucial questions before laying her brother’s ghost to rest?
Who betrayed Leo?
Who knew about the stolen Renoir?
And are they prepared to kill – again?
The Betrayal is the sixth novel by Anne Allen in her series set on beautiful Guernsey. If you haven’t indulged yourself by immersing yourself into her world yet, then what are you waiting for? Even though this was the first one that I’d read, it stood up well as a stand-alone piece but I enjoyed it so much, it’s left me keen to explore the other five as soon as I can.
The only novel I’d previously read that gave me insight into the occupation of the Channel Islands was the fantastic Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society
This prior understanding of the Nazi occupation helped me immerse myself in the second part of the novel’s dual narrative, and I soon found myself lost in this book which I read all in one go. Dual narrative novels are a great favourite of mine but sometimes I can fall into the trap of enjoying one story much more than the other and flipping forward impatiently to “get back” to the more interesting narrative. I can honestly say that The Betrayal felt well- balanced on tbevejoke with the two different time periods both having sufficient charm and “draw” to allow me to move between them effortlessly.
Fiona was my favourite character and I loved the way that her quest drew me in. Who hasn’t yearned to start up a small shop filled with things they love? Fiona’s story with all the ensuing mystery over the hidden stash of Isi tings really captured my imagination and I found myself daydreaming about finding a lost Dickens manuscript and what I’d do if my daydream of opening my very own beautiful wee bookshop ever came true…
I’ve never been to the Channel Islands but The Betrayal was certainly a real temptation to me in drawing me there if I ever get the chance. Both time periods use the dramatic setting to great effect and it was my ability to be transported there through the skill of Anne Allen’s writing that made me wish that I could see these beautiful islands for myself and walk in Theresa and Fiona’s footsteps.
The Betrayal will be enjoyed by lovers of both historical fiction and romance who enjoy being immersed in a good story with characters that you can imagine yourself meeting and interacting with. I found Fiona’s narrative hen more compelling but I was totally engrossed in Theresa’s wartime narrative and broken hearted over what she and many others like her had to endure during this bleak time in history. I love novels that you finish knowing more about a period than you did before reading them, and this is certainly the case with The Betrayal. I enjoyed this book a lot and will certainly be recommending her to my mum who certainly enjoys a period romance and who I think will definitely become a firm fan of Anne Allen and her Guernsey novels.
Writer On The Shelf
Anne Allen lives in Devon, by her beloved sea. She has three children, and her daughter and two grandchildren live nearby. Her restless spirit has meant a number of moves which included Spain for a couple of years. The longest stay was in Guernsey for nearly fourteen years after falling in love with the island and the people. She contrived to leave one son behind to ensure a valid reason for frequent returns.
By profession, Anne was a psychotherapist, but long had the itch to write. Now a full-time writer, she has written The Guernsey Novels, six having been published and the seventh, The Inheritance, is due out in 2018.
Social Media Links – Website: http://www.anneallen.co.uk
Great news if you fancy reading Anne’s back catalogue:
A Triple Celebration and a Price Reduction!
For this week only, until 18th February, the price of books 2-6 of The Guernsey Novels is only £1.99, with book 1, ‘Dangerous Waters, remaining at 99p
This is in celebration of Anne Allen’s birthday, the 6th anniversary of the publication of ‘Dangerous Waters’ and the recent publication of book 6, ‘The Betrayal’.
Check out the other bloggers on The Betrayal Blog Tour this week and keep your eyes peeled for news of the fabulous Giveaway of a signed copy
Thank you so much to Rachel for inviting me on the Blog Tour and introducing me to the Guernsey series. I can’t wait to read the rest now