I read Fiona Veitch Smith's "The Peace Garden" when it first came out 2 years ago. I liked it so much I decided to reread it again, and when Fiona offered me a free signed copy (I had read it on my kindle) in exchange for a review, I jumped at the chance. I love the kindle, but there is just something about having the actual book in my hand...and I definitely enjoyed it better in actual book format!
The book is written from the perspective of a young girl, Natalie, who is a lively character and completely true to life. The story, which covers 10 years of Natalie's life, begins while she is staying for the summer of 1990 with her grandmother in Northumberland in northeast England. She starts investigating the theft of some plants from her grandmother and her neighbour's gardens. During her investigation she gets to know a neighbour who is from South Africa, and who came to England to escape apartheid. In the course of the relationship with him and his son, we learn a lot about apartheid and South Africa.
The story leads us on a wonderful exploration of character, history, romance and throws in page-turning suspense that makes this book a wonderful read for a wide audience! If you want to find out about South Africa's history while enjoying a good book, then this is for you. If you like suspense-there is enough of that... Romantic back-stories? Yes! And all wrapped up in a very fascinating story with well-drawn and engaging characters!
If you are looking for a good read which will keep you engaged and entertained, I highly recommend this book as one to go for!!
Disclosure of Material connection: As already mentioned, I did receive a free copy of this book from the author, but this review is my own true opinion of the book.