Lord of the Far Island

This is by far the best of Victoria Holt’s I have read.

Lord of the Far Island by Victoria HoltIt’s hard to put it down because whoever showed interest in Ellen can also be the person who wanted to kill her. And you can’t really be sure who the bad guy is until almost the end of the book.

Since she wrote it in two separate parts, you are tricked into thinking one has little to do with the other, just like Ellen did.

On pattern I noticed is that the heroines in her books usually picks the seemingly bad dude. Still each bad dude was different enough, you won’t feel like she was just recycling characters.

Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt

Mistress of MellynThis is the second Victoria Holt I have read. As I expected, Mistress of Mellyn is similar to The Shivering Sands. However, I still couldn’t put it down because you don’t know who the bad guy is until the last part.

In both books, the heroines are in the role of teachers; the men of the house have questionable characters; the heroines hate the master at first, think Pride and Prejudice); they fall in love and lived happily ever after.

What kept it interesting is that in each story the heroines face different challenges. Also, her use of non-human characters-the archaeological dig site in The Shivering Sands, the horse riding/houses in Mistress of Mellyn, not only moves the stories along, you learn something interesting on the way.

The Shivering Sands by Victoria Holt

In the last few weeks, I realized I needed to read more fictions to help me become more expressive. Many times, I was stopped by my limited abilities to write in the ways that would justify the feelings I was trying to portray.

The Shivering SandSince my instructor encourages me to write more romance, I decided on reading books by Victoria Holt. I remember reading them in my native language when I was in junior high.

The Shivering Sands is not only a romance, it is also a mystery. I was pleasantly surprised that I could read her books (first published in 1969) without difficulty.

This story keeps you turning the page. When she wrote about the sceneries, it was always just long enough to keep you from skipping to the next paragraph. And the romance is always tangled up with the mystery so it’s not just a frivolous part of the whole story.

Although in a few places I found similar conversations being repeated too many times. Perhaps I noticed it because we are living in a fast pace world and I didn’t want to read what I was already told.

It is amazing that Victoria Holt, Eleanor Hibbert in real life, wrote the story so long ago, I still couldn’t help becoming someone who might have lived in that time and place.