14 March 2016

Review #368: The Storm Sister (The Seven Sisters #2) by Lucinda Riley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“We do not have to be ashamed of what we are. As sentient beings we have wonderful backgrounds. These backgrounds may not be particularly enlightened or peaceful or intelligent. Nevertheless, we have soil good enough to cultivate; we can plant anything in it.”

----Chögyam Trungpa

Lucinda Riley, an Irish international bestselling author, pens her second book, The Storm Sister in her series called The Seven Sisters. This soul-touching and engrossing book narrates the story of the second eldest sister, Ally after Maia, who embarks upon a journey to find her original roots after her adoptive father's sudden death.


Ally D'Aplièse is about to compete in one of the world's most perilous yacht races, when she hears the news of her adoptive father's sudden, mysterious death. Rushing back to meet her five sisters at their family home, she discovers that her father - an elusive billionaire affectionately known to his daughters as Pa Salt - has left each of them a tantalizing clue to their true heritage.

Ally has also recently embarked on a deeply passionate love affair that will change her destiny forever. But with her life now turned upside down, Ally decides to leave the open seas and follow the trail that her father left her, which leads her to the icy beauty of Norway . . .
There, Ally begins to discover her roots - and how her story is inextricably bound to that of a young unknown singer, Anna Landvik, who lived there over 100 years before, and sang in the first performance of Grieg's iconic music set to Ibsen's play 'Peer Gynt'. As Ally learns more about Anna, she also begins to question who her father, Pa Salt, really was. And why is the seventh sister missing?

Ally D'Aplièse, is the second eldest sister among the six sisters and they were all adopted by a wealthy billionaire, whom they used to call as 'Pa Salt'. They grew up in their adoptive father's palatial home by the shores of Lake Geneva. But Pa Salt is dead now and as per his last dying wish, Ally embarks upon a journey in search of her original roots. But her decision to undertake this journey is on the crossroads as she is in love with the man of her dreams but soon her gravity changes and Norway awaits her arrival with open arms, especially with the story of Anna Landvik and Jens who both took part in a five-act play in verse called Peer Gynt. Laced with musical historical that took place almost hundred years ago in Norway, Ally's story is simply entrancing and intriguing.

Although the story is a fictional account of a woman whose roots take her on the high road to Norway where the story again takes us hundred years back in time highlighting the love story between the world's one of the greatest music composers, Jens Halvorsen and the famous singer, Anna Landvik, that is set around in Norway as well as in Germany. Gradually from Jens and Anna's story, it comes down from one generation after another until the last living Halvorsen in the present timeline. Some characters in the book are drawn straight from the pages of the world history, but the stories going in and around their lives are mostly fictional!

The book is set across so many beautiful countries around the world, from the sky-blue sea in Greece to a country house on a island in Geneva to a backward village in Norway to it's city to another in Germany, the story simply guides the readers through many untrodden as well as beautiful destinations. And each and every location, especially Norway, is vividly painted into the pages of this book by the author.

The writing style is exquisite that spell-bound me with it's fairy-tale-like essence. The author has unfolded the stories of Ally and Anna strikingly and consecutively, with Anna's story breaking at such vital points that kept me anticipating real hard. The prose is eloquent and evocative that kept me turning the pages of the book till it's very end. Moreover, the articulate and engaging narrative kept me glued till the very last page. The emotional pull in this book is quite strong, since the story unfolds from Ally's POV, who happen to suffer from pain and grief. Her story made my heart break into millions of pieces. Also while reading I felt like the author has poured all her best emotions while penning this story.

This story has many layers and each intricate layer is written with enough compassion and depth. Despite of Ally's POV, the author has given opportunity to her readers to look at the story from their own perspectives. The characters are well-crafted and exceptionally brilliant. Although this is the second book, hence we get a brief idea about all the six sisters as well as some of the supporting cast in the first book.

This book envelopes around Ally's world who is a daring sailor and loves to take part in some of the world's most famous yacht races. Ally is a brave and independent woman who has made her mark in the world of men. But the amount and level of grief she goes through, made me sympathetic as well as root for her till the very end. Anna and Jens are another two most interesting characters in the book. Anna's dedication towards music and her love for Jens kept me hooked on to the book.

The book ends with a mild cliffhanger and at certain points, the book raises some mystifying questions that certainly has an enigma related to it, that which definitely made me to vouch for the next book in this series.

Read the review of The Seven Sisters

Verdict: A must read series for all the historical romance reader fans!

Courtesy: Thanks to the author's publicist, for giving me an opportunity to read and review this book.
Author Info:
Lucinda Riley was born in Ireland and wrote her first book aged 24. Her novel 'Hothouse Flower' (also called 'The Orchid House') was selected for the UK's Richard and Judy Bookclub in 2011 and went on to sell 2 million copies worldwide. She is a multiple New York Times bestselling author and has topped the bestseller charts in four European countries.
In response to demand from her readers, she has recently re-written two books from her early writing career when published under her maiden name Lucinda Edmonds - the books are now being published as 'The Italian Girl' and 'The Angel Tree'.
'The Seven Sisters' is the first of a unique seven book series based allegorically on the mythology of the famous star constellation.
Lucinda's books are translated into 28 languages and published in 38 countries. She lives with her husband and four children on the North Norfolk coast in England and in the South of France.
Visit her here

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