Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Golden Earrings

This is the fifth novel by Belinda Alexandra. I've read them all. It feels like Belinda Alexandra has matured a bit in her writing. The way the lives of the three women in this story are braided together is very well done.
   The other great thing about this novel is that it is a history lesson. Belinda Alexandra definitely does her research. The story is based in Spain. I had never stopped to consider how their economy must have been affected by losing their colonies. I also didn't know that the Spanish Civil War was a predicator to WWII. It just goes to show how little history the public education system taught my generation.

   What I didn't like about Belinda Alexandra's first couple of novels was that her main female characters were perfect, and quite bland. The story occurred around the character - the character certain wasn't the driving force. In Golden Earrings, Belinda Alexandra has been able to distinguish between each of her three women, giving them more definitive traits. However, each time the story is told from the point of view of a different women, the voice is exactly the same. Despite the differences in these women, they all seem to think and feel the same way. I didn't buy that.
   But what I really enjoyed about her first couple of books was the Australian connection. In her last couple of books, Belinda Alexandra hasn't had that Australian connection. I'd really like for her to bring that back.
   This was a 'good read', or an 'easy read'. The pace was pretty good, after the first chapter (the first chapter took a while - the hook is right at the end). I would have given this book four stars in Good Reads a couple of years ago. But since I've been reading so many classics, and really good Australian literature, Golden Earrings is a bit too main-stream. The writing is good, but not charming or great.
   Overall, a good read!


  1. Thanks for the review, I'm curious about Belinda's books and I think I'll give them a go sometime. I do like books where you get to learn a bit about history while reading.

    1. If you like some history, then Belinda Alexandra is good. Her first book, White Gardenia was about a Russian girl living in China who escapes as a refugee to Australia. Silver Wattle is about the early Australian film industry, and refugees from Prague. Tuscan Rose, I think, is the best. It is based in Italy before and during the war. Belinda Alexandra is a good Australian writer, worth supporting.

  2. Thanks for sharing your AWW review!

    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

    1. You're very welcome. Thanks for hosting the AWW challenge. There are so many people participating!