Even in Paradise
This was an engrossing tale that I found hard to put down. Peter Ducksworth, a Trinidadian of English descent, has three daughters Glynis the eldest, Rebecca the middle daughter and Corinne, the youngest and Mr. Ducksworth's favorite.
After moving to Barbados, from Trinidad in order to live his life in paradise along the white sandy beaches, Peter Ducksworth decides to hand over two pieces of his land to the older daughters. Rebecca has just eloped with a new husband of English ancestry and Glynis is about to marry Albert, a Trinidadian of Lebanese descent. Corinne will have to wait for her inheritance, which is to be the biggest plot of land where her father has his house, in which he intends to spend the rest of his days. But, resentful of the fact that Corinne is the favored daughter, the others may have designs on her future inheritance and Mr. Ducksworth himself doesn't make things easy for his daughters with his constant need for attention and affection.
The story is narrated by Emile, a Trinidadian of African descent, who has know the family since he was a child. He is in fact the son of Mr. Ducksworth's personal physician, and Albert, Glynis' finance is Emile best friend. He is therefore privy to all the family dynamics and is able to tell the story of greed, sibling rivalry and manipulation like an insider. As he gets closer to Corinne, he becomes more than an outsider and is able to make the reader feel as if he is having an intimate chat with a close friend.
I loved the way this book covered so many themes, from colonialism, racism, current politics, greed, rivalry and jealousy and was still able to convey the characters in a way that the reader feels an intimate connection with them. The multiple stories within the book were fascinating and well told.
Thanks to the Library Thing giveaway and Akashic Books for allowing me to read this book in exchange for an honest review