The Tea Planter's Wife by Dinah Jefferies is an international best seller. The back cover blurbs called it atmospheric and vivid, compared it to Rebecca, and said it was spellbinding.
Passage to India by E M Forster and the novels of Rumor Godden set in India are some of my favorite books. I thought this book set in Ceylon might offer the East Meets West theme. And I love Rebecca.
Gwen at nineteen is married and joins her rich, plantation owner hubby in Ceylon. But instead of recreating their courtship and honeymoon love, Gwen finds Laurence oddly distracted, distant, and cold.
A few chapters in I was not convinced I wanted to continue. I enjoy character development. Gwen's disappointment in Laurnce's inability to bed her left me cold. I did not know enough about the characters to feel Gwen's pain.
Skipping ahead to see where the story was going I may have found Gwen's situation regarding her children more interesting. But the big reveal about them is so implausible!
I think those who like historical romance novels with a melodrama plot twist would like this more than I did.
I received a free book through Blogging for Books in exchange for a fair review.
The Tea Planter's Wife