It has been 24 years since a young Helena spent a magical holiday in Cyprus, where she fell in love for the first time. When the now crumbling house, Pandora, is left to her by her godfather, she returns to spend the summer there with her family.
At the difficult age of 13, her son, Alex, is torn between protecting his mother and learning the truth about his real father. Both Helena and Alex know that life will never be the same once Pandora's secrets have been revealed....
©2016 Lucinda Riley (P)2016 W.F. Howes Ltd
This book for me was a slow burn, but after a few chapters, I was hooked. The bit at the end with Lucinda & Harry are also really interesting
The accents are all 'frightfully posh darling' and it is grating to listen to, I only I suffered on as the story seemed intriguing. But for the greatest part of the book nothing happens! What I found amazing is that what is imagined in the characters thoughts is more exciting than what actually happens in the story. The suggested truth to the big puzzle of the story could have been so much more exciting than the eventual far fetched explanation. I've about 3hrs to go but I don't think I'll make it.
at the beginning of the book I felt I could have easily not finished it....but by the end I was hooked and didnt want it to end and I miss the characters and what is happening in their lives
Ideally not. I found Lucinda's narration very irritating. And lots of words mispronounced which was unexpected for someone speaking in RP English.
It was predictable and slow and I felt that when the secret was revealed the characters reacted in an unbelievable way.
Parts of this book are so bad I laughed out loud. Particularly the bit where the impossibly beautiful, impossibly talented Helena, attired in a borrowed gown which of course makes her look exquisite, goes to a ball with a handsome prince only to flee from him as the clock strikes midnight, leaving behind her evening shoes! This section must have been written after too many glasses of lovely wine on the beautiful terrace overlooking the amazing pool.Other parts are just downright disturbing, e.g., Helena turning a blind eye to her 14 year old stepdaughter's boyfriend staying the night, the amazingly mature stepdaughter reassuring her that it's all ok because she is after all NEARLY 15. The flashbacks to Helena's life in Vienna, while a trademark of Lucinda Riley's historical novels, seemed wrong here and it would have been better for Helena simply to have explained them. This in itself made the book unnecessarily long, not to mention the section at the end set in the summer of 2016, which just went on and on and on and tied up everything far too neatly.I agree with other reviewers about the frequent use of blasphemy, which would also put me off buying any more of Lucinda Riley's books.The book's one saving grace was Alex's diary, which realistically portrayed teenage angst and pretentiousness; unfortunately his manner of speaking did not seem to have changed much 10 years later. Oh, and I didn't think Lucinda Riley was the worst narrator; she was certainly better than any of the actors who have narrated the Seven Sisters books so far. And I quite liked that her son Harry was the voice of Alex - it added a welcome note of authenticity to the whole production but sadly didn't redeem it for me. I've said it before and I'll say it again - Lucinda Riley should focus on quality rather than quantity in her writing or she will begin to lose her more discerning readers.
Past, present and future unfold in this wonderfully narrated book. Dilemmas and the need to protect those we love ,draw the listner/reader to continue to turn the pages. The style is different to Lucinda other books but just as compelling and wonderfully written and narrated.
It was difficult to get into this book but once I did it was a good story with interesting characters. The one thing I hated was the constant use of blasphemy. I have read many books with great stories, gripping plots, and interesting characters without the constant use of bad language and blasphemy in particular. To me this was a good read spoiled and if this is the style of writing that Lucinda Riley is going to use in her future books, I for one will not be buying them.
Lucinda Riley is my all time favourite author. This book was very good with characters you felt you had met in real life. I laughed out loud at observations in his teenage diary very fun especially with Harry's voice added to them. However I don't think it was as good as Lucinda's historical more classical books such as 'Hothouse' etc....
Lucinda and Harry's narration was fantastic.
This is definitely worth a read as I enjoyed it, however I think you have spoilt me Lucinda. Please more of your historical magical books.
"Best Lucinda Riley Book - Perfect Summer Read"
This is now my favorite book by Lucinda Riley. Prior to reading The Olive Tree, my favorite Lucinda Riley book was The Seven Sisters. But Riley's new contemporary novel quickly stole the place of favorite.
Lucinda Riley creates intriguing character dynamics in The Olive Tree and focuses on character development rather than a sweeping story spanning the decades.
This book is a perfect summer read. Set it Cyprus with a tropical locale this book is perfect to read poolside. The drama will keep you captivated throughout with plenty of twists and turns.
I'm an avid reader of Lucinda Riley's book and the first few chapters I thought I had this one all figured out. But I turned out to be wrong and was pleasantly surprised with the twists in store.
"A Different Style"
I waited anxiously for another book from one of my favorite authors. This book is a family drama which is totally different from previous books by Lucinda Riley. It was well written but not just what you would expect as her other books. I do not care for family dramas very much. It almost is a different genre than the others that were more historical fiction .
"Nice, easy listen, cute story"
Nice storyline. Sweet characters. Narrator was good except for the one American voice he tried to do. Thank goodness that person only had a few lines. It was ghastly!
"Enjoyable but not my favorite"
I was drawn in by the plot however I felt like the authors world-views skewed every character. The plot and decisions made by each character seemed unrealistic and pretty outlandish. I had a difficult time finding a character I liked and respected.
Nice family drama that keeps the listener wanting to know what happened. Written with scill and humour. I have ready all of Lucindas books, and though this differs a bit from the others IT is just AS good a book. Love the fact that Lucinda and her son narrated this themselves- and did a splendid job too!
"Pass on This One"
I have read all of Ms. Riley's books and it was all I could do to finish this one. Very flat story and characters until the last couple of chapters. Wasn't like her other books. Just droned on. Pass on this one and save the credit.
"Standing ovation - bravo!"
This book is published under two titles: The Olive Tree and Helena's story.
The first book I read of this talented author was Hot House Flowers. Eagerly I searched for more stories and have consistently loved her work. Entranced by the Seven Sisters series, this book appeared unexpectedly.
What courage it takes to depart from a tried and true genre. The Olive Tree still leaves me wanting more.
Truly this book illustrates both literally and verbally the depth of her talents.
Narrated by Lucinda Riley herself and her son - the story takes us to Cyprus as we join a family on their summer holidays. All families have secrets and secrets are bound to come out.
If Lucinda ever decided she wanted a career change - she'd be snapped up as a narrator in a heartbeat. Her son does a superb job as well. Truly would love to spend a meal with such a talented and vivacious family.
Made me tired. A depressing story that lacked any real substance. Not what I was expecting from LR.
This book was not what I would say mysterious if your that kind of person, more about they're problems, on and on and on. I'm not going to suggest it to my friend who enjoys the same kind of books I do.
Just goes on and on about feelings, you just want them to get to the point which when you did wasn't that interesting.
Disappointment, I enjoy Linda Riley books, just no this one.
I've read a number of Lucinda Riley books and this is my least favorite. I found the story line juvenile and mostly predictable. Not a satisfying read for me..
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