Respectable Julia is horrified to receive a phone call from the British Consul saying that her teenage sister Emily has been thrown in jail on a South-East Asian island for alleged drug smuggling. Immediately she takes the next plane for Maising, leaving her disgruntled husband behind. Even more bad news, nobody knows the whereabouts of her sister’s child. Julia visits theRespectable Julia is horrified to receive a phone call from the British Consul saying that her teenage sister Emily has been thrown in jail on a South-East Asian island for alleged drug smuggling. Immediately she takes the next plane for Maising, leaving her disgruntled husband behind. Even more bad news, nobody knows the whereabouts of her sister’s child. Julia visits the jail where Emily insists toddler Rosie is safe because she’s with a trusted friend. But where the trusted friend is, no one knows. Emily, a teenage single mum on a belated gap year plus toddler, says she bought a padded cotton bag from an itinerant seller at the bus station. Yet when she went through airport security, the bag was found to have a false bottom containing cannabis. Julia believes Em’s claims that she’s been framed, but the young Consul says the penalties for drug smuggling are severe, as in many other parts of South East Asia. Obviously Julia wants to rescue her sister and find her child as quickly as possible. The British Embassy vainly tries to help and so does Duncan Hereford, an expat doctor with something of a past, and Julia’s pompous husband keeps phoning with his ideas too. The Embassy advises it is imperative the British Press don’t get to hear about Emily because the tabloids are bound to write nonsense about backward foreign Maising and offend the Prince, making Emily’s chances of receiving a royal pardon highly unlikely. But she’s innocent, Julia keeps saying but no one will believe her. Meanwhile there are constant rumours from the outlying islands that a white child has been seen and Duncan offers to take Julia on several boat trips to investigate, all in vain. But then the tabloids get hold of the story of the beautiful imprisoned British girl and her lost baby and all hell breaks loose. And Emily’s bad-news ex-boyfriend, the toddler’s natural father, begins to take an interest. Tropical Shadows is a delightful story of sibling love and loyalty that will capture your heart. Susie Vereker is the author of several romances; An Old Fashioned Arrangement, and Paris Imperfect. Pond Lane and Paris was nominated for the RNA Foster Grant Award. Susie has lived in Germany, Thailand, Australia, Greece, Switzerland and France but she now resides in a small village in Hampshire. Endeavour Press is the UK's leading independent digital publisher. For more information on our titles please sign up to our newsletter at www.endeavourpress.com. Each week you will receive updates on free and discounted ebooks. Follow us on Twitter: @EndeavourPress and on Facebook via http://on.fb.me/1HweQV7. We are always interested in hearing from our readers. Endeavour Press believes that the future is now....
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||570 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
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Tropical Shadows Reviews
Tropical Shadows is the story of a staid English woman, Julia, who has to rush across the world to a south-east Asian island to help her sister, a tourist who has been arrested for drug possession. If that isn’t bad enough, her sister Emily has a two year old daughter who is missing. The story opened up with a growing dread and tension about what was going to happen to Julia’s sister and the very real possibility that Emily would be stuck in prison for 10 years. But the biggest worry is where Emily’s daughter is. She insists that she’s with a friend but the contact information has been wiped out from her phone when she was arrested. Emily is worried that the child will be taken by the authorities and imprisoned herself in state run foster care. Julia then embarks on a quest to find her niece with the help of an attractive English doctor who has made the island his home. I felt for Julia. Stuck in a marriage of convenience, being mother and father to a spoiled sister. Emily was wonderfully annoying and self-entitled and that kept the tension up because there was poor Julia who essentially was putting her life on hold for her sister and the girl expected nothing less. It would be easy to get frustrated with Julia for allowing herself to be a doormat, but I found her to be realistically drawn and reflective of any number of women who put themselves last after the people they love. I’m glad that Julia finally put herself first in the end. My only quibble is that some things did get tied up neatly, but this is minor since the story is more romantic suspense than thriller. Overall, an enjoyable read wrapped in an exotic setting.
Whatever you do, don't read the blurb on either Goodreads or Amazon as it gives away far too much of the story. Tropical Shadows is an interesting and relevant read especially due to the number of Western people that end up in prison in SE Asia due to drug smuggling. The book starts off at a quick pace, the first chapter sets the scene for the book and we're thrust into the drama right from the start. Julia's younger sister Emily has been arrested at the airport for having drugs concealed in her bag. Emily insists she's innocent but no one believes her and worst of all Rosie, Emily's toddler, has been left in the care of a friend and no one can find this friend. Julia jumps on a plane to Maising and works with the British Embassy to try and free Emily and find Rosie. I enjoyed the premise of the book, we're introduced to some interesting characters at the Embassy and I loved the setting of the island. Julia as a character was likeable, she's tried to look after Emily after their Mum died and she really feels responsible for the pair. Emily, I struggled to like. She was annoying and I felt she didn't quite grasp the whole seriousness of the situation she was in. I felt she didn't even feel bothered that her 2 year old daughter was missing! Overall, the story went at a good pace and I did want to find out what happened in the end. It does bring up some questions about what would you do if you was in the same situation. I definitely wouldn't be like Emily that's for sure!I will read more from Susie Vereker in the future.
Firstly, I’d like to say I think the Blurb gives away too much of the plot. When I read a book I like to find out for myself what happens; to discover the story for myself.Tropical Shadows begins interestingly and sets up the story in the long first chapter. The reader is thrust into the plot right away and I was looking forward to a tense read. A young girl caught with drugs and imprisoned into a primitive prison in a foreign country has all the ingredients of a disturbing, even sinister tale. Add to that a disquieting parallel plot of a missing child and the expectation of tension grows.There are quite a few portrayals of interesting characters who add background to Tropical Shadows, some well-written descriptions of the settings that give a good sense of place, and a quite good insight to how Embassies could be run. It’s a good plot.But, as a whole, I’m afraid it didn’t work for me. I found difficult to have any empathy with both the protagonist or any of the main characters because I didn’t feel I got to know them. And, somehow, the dialogue isn’t emotional enough; it doesn’t show the fear, the anxiety, the hopelessness of the some of the situations. The words are there but there is no showing of rise and fall of crisis and conflict in the characters or the action. And every now and again the story falls into telling, rather than showing, especially when relating the past.Perhaps a tighter, final edit could resolve these issues.
Julia Webb is in her late 30s, married, living a nice life in Richmond. She also has a younger sister Emily, who she has just learnt is in gaol in a remote South East Asian island for drug smuggling. She makes arrangements to fly out to the island of Maising the following day leaving her husband to take care of things at home.Once Julia arrives on the lush tropical island she is met by an Embassy official and taken to see her sister who strongly maintains she is innocent saying she was set up. There is an added problem of Emily’s 2 year old daughter Rosie, who was being looked after by a friend of Emily (a local native girl) but trying to find the little girl is proving to be a big problem. By this time Julia has made acquaintance with the Ambassador’s wife and has moved into the Embassy whilst she is struggling to find Rosie and trying to free Emily. She is helped by an expat Doctor, Duncan who is keen to help her track down the little girl by taking her to some of the out-islands where it has been rumoured she is there. Against her better judgement she is attracted to Duncan (which is reciprocated) but Julia is desperate to preserve her good reputation – especially if the press gets hold of the whole Emily/drug/child story.In spite of the story of drug smuggling and a possible abduction plot involving a young pretty English 2 year old which could have made the story quite dark and serious, Susie Vereker manages to keep her story upbeat - eventually uplifting.I loved the descriptions of the lush tropical island and enjoyed the comedy of manners involving British expats and Embassy life - but ultimately it is a good holiday read although it did lack gravitas in view of the serious subject matter of the plot. Thanks to Netgalley for an advanced copy of this book.
Review will follow asap.
Respectable Julia is horrified to receive a phone call from the British Consul saying that her teenage sister Emily has been thrown in jail on a South-East Asian island for alleged drug smuggling. Immediately she takes the next plane for Maising, leaving her disgruntled husband behind. I enjoyed this novel - good light summer holiday reading! Susie Vereker sets the scene well and evokes a clear sense of time and place. I enjoyed the mystery side of the story, as Julia struggles to find the elusive Lek, the 'friend' to whom Emily has entrusted her small daughter. I found Emily very irritating, though, as an irresponsible mother. There are some blips in the narrative in the latter part of the novel, but overall a recommended read.
I really liked this! It was not as serious a read as I expected by the description or the beginning chapters, but I really liked the main character, Julia, and it was interesting to see how her story progressed throughout the book. It kept me engaged even when some of the minor characters were annoying. I felt it was a bit all over the place about 3/4 through but I still really enjoyed it and wanted to see how it all wrapped up. I would say this is more a 3.5