I was first introduced the Jenny Ashcroft’s wonderful writing ability in her novel Meet Me in Bombay last year and I couldn’t believe that I hadn’t read anything by her before. So when I saw she had another historical fiction novel coming out this year I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. It’s now a foregone conclusion, I need all of her books. I love that she writes historical fiction novels that are set in exotic locations—Egypt, Singapore, Bombay and now Australia.
This book is set in WWII (her other books also have a war backdrop) and I think this is such a wonderful pairing because so many historical fiction novels are set in either Paris or London during WWII and the war was a WORLD WAR meaning it impacted many other areas and I love that Ashcroft takes us to some new and exciting places while theres a war on and explore what impact that war has on said area.
If the history and exotic location wasn’t enough to tempt you, then the romance should. Ashcroft write beautiful romances with memorable characters. I can still recall Meet Me in Bombay and the characters even over a year after reading it! If you want a new refreshing historical fiction novel then look no further. This is a wonderful choice!
Jenny Ashcroft’s Under the Golden Sun is a captivating World War II historical love story set against the raw beauty of Australia.
Rose Hamilton is in desperate need of a life change when she reads the want ad in the newspaper for a companion needed to escort a young orphaned child to Australia. There are so many reasons she should ignore the advertisement―the war, those treacherous winter seas, her family, her fiance… but she can’t help herself. Within weeks she is boarding an enormous convoy, already too attached to five-year-old Walter.
Unfortunately, the cattle station home of Walter’s family isn’t anything like either of them were told to expect. Rose can’t leave this little boy who she’s grown to love until he is happy and settled, and she knows the key to this is Walter’s wounded fighter pilot uncle. But how will she ever part with Walter? And what if he isn’t the only reason she wants to stay? (summary from Goodreads)
I think I liked this one better than Meet Me in Bombay and I was surprised by that because Meet Me in Bombay was pretty damn good! I loved how this story started with Rose feeling pretty blah about her life. I think a lot of readers will instantly feel a connection with Rose’s character and fall in love with her. I loved that she decides to randomly answer an ad to travel with a child to Australia and how that one decision drastically impacts her life. I thought that it gave this story a more epic and romantic feel right from the start. The cast of characters and the romance that plays out are genuine, memorable, and stunning. I absolutely loved the characters and this would have been a 5 star book based on characters a lone but the setting stole my heart and sealed the 5 star deal!
I have never been to Australia but I certainly want to now! I felt like I was right there in the outback and I want to visit this place so badly! The last book I read that was set in Australia that really brought the location to life was The Pearl Sister by Lucinda Riley. This book in many ways brought back that same love and beauty of the country that Riley’s book did. It was exactly what I needed to read right now! It was transporting and warming. I felt like I got to go on an adventure from my couch.
This book was packed full of emotion. There is a lot going on with the characters and as you read the book you can easily sympathize with this situations and struggles. I felt really connected even to the host of secondary characters and their various struggles in this story but ultimately it was Rose I felt the most connected to though I did care for the other characters it was her and her principal story line that I was constantly eager to get back to and discover. I wanted to blow through this one but at the same time didn’t want it to end and have to return to real life. This was a glorious read and if you love exotic locations no doubt you will fall in love with Australia just like I did!
Book Info and Rating
Ebook 353 pages
Expected publication March 15th 2022 St Martin’s Press
Free review copy provided by publisher, St Martins Press, in exchange for an honest review all opinions are my own and in no way influenced.
Rating: 5 stars
Genre: historical fiction