When Captain Edgar Drummond learns he is to serve in the Crimean war, he brings with him his two sisters, Blanche and Sarah. Edgar finds his obsession with reason and order ineffectual amidst the chaos of war, and as the fighting drags on, the sisters' true qualities begin to emerge....
|Title||:||Leaves from the Valley|
|Number of Pages||:||316 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Leaves from the Valley Reviews
I originally read this book years ago and promptly lost track of the title. I was so happy to find it republished in paperback. But my fear was that it wouldn't be as wonderful as I remembered. I am happy to report that it held up quite nicely.The storyline is a familiar one. Edgar Drummond is the grandson of a dashing cavalry officer who died at Waterloo. Ever since he was a teen he has wanted to be a dashing cavalry officer. Alas, Edgar has no dash in his make-up. Edgar's two sisters (Blanche and Sarah) have always been very close to their brother, so when he finally gets a commission, and heads out to the Crimea in 1854, they accompany him, with their parents blessing. After all, it is going to be one of those short, glorious wars, and everyone will be headed home by Easter.The other major thread of the story involves Robert Chiltern, who disappoints his father by refusing a cavalry commission and going out to cover the war as a correspondent for one of London's major newspapers.Naturally, their paths cross and re-cross. Sarah falls hard for Robert who falls for Blanche who falls for (and runs off with)a flashy French officer.What sets this book apart from many historical romances is that Trollope is a very skilled writer who obviously did her homework. Her young ladies do not speak like modern misses in crinolines. The battle scenes are well done. The descriptions of the conditions are almost heartbreaking in their gritty reality. Of course, real people wander in and out of the story, but our characters interact with them in very minor (and thus, very realistic) ways.The growth of the characters over the course of the story is well done; not every character rises to the occasion. The romance is there, but it is not the main focus of the story.Highly recommended for the historical fiction fan.
A little bit wishy-washy about three incredibly irritating siblings, Edgar, Sarah and the worst, Blanche. I found the plot somewhat unlikely that a soppy man should take these dreadful sisters to accompany him to the Crimea War because they had never been apart before. However, Joanna Trollope writing as Caroline Harvey did invoke in me the need to catch up on some history that I had never learned despite having been born into a Military family. Considering the empire that Britain had created, their military leaders really seemed to have been a bunch of buffoons or so it seemed in the Boer War, the Crimea and more infamously in World War I.
Usually I enjoy Ms. Trollope's works, but this just didn't grab me. After 104 pages, I'm giving up.The characters are very much stereotypes, with Edgar being somewhat priggish, Blanche living up to her name, and Sarah as the intelligent one who will have an opportunity to leave her narrowly defined role behind. Yawn. The setting, Scutari during the Crimean War, could have been interesting - as could the characters - had there been more action (the start of the book held promise; once we got to the story proper, however...).