Leaping into March I have a very special blog post for you! Today I am reviewing The Woman Behind the Waterfall by Leonora Meriel. After all this cold weather it’s only natural that I would choose a book which will hopefully speed up spring! I also have a wonderful announcement to tell you! Keep reading to find out more!
Heartbreak and transformation in the beauty of a Ukrainian village
For seven-year-old Angela, happiness is exploring the lush countryside around her home in western Ukraine. Her wild imagination takes her into birds and flowers, and into the waters of the river.
All that changes when, one morning, she sees her mother crying. As she tries to find out why, she is drawn on an extraordinary journey into the secrets of her family, and her mother’s fateful choices.
Can Angela lead her mother back to happiness before her innocence is destroyed by the shadows of a dark past?
Official blurb for The Woman Behind the Waterfall
From the very first page I knew this book was going to be special. As soon as I started reading, I couldn’t stop. The language is astonishingly beautiful and takes you into a world you feel you know so well. I adored the imagery of every scene and Meriel’s descriptions made it easy for me to lose myself inside this story. The poetic and botanical narrative creates a glorious atmospheric book. I adored the setting; I felt as if I could have been there, with all the flowers, surrounded by nature, chasing the birds, discovering nests…
The characters in this book make this story what it is- a continuous rainbow spilling over every page. Angela is one of the main characters in the story; parts of the book are seen through her eyes- so filled with wonder and imagination. She appears full of gratitude for her life and never takes anything for granted. She is rightly curious, but oh so innocent, as she unravels the mysteries of the past. She is not sickly-sweet and is a strong character on her own, but neither does she over power the story. She is the perfect puzzle piece to the plot. I also loved Angela’s Grandmother and mother, Lyuda, who’s collective mistakes create a unique family full of wisdom. The different generations of the same family give a lovable nature to this story; despite their similarities, each character has their own individual qualities that help one another realise their own light at the end of the tunnel.
This ethereal reality mixed with the imagination of a child was an interesting running theme. The story is also very maternal and whimsical. I enjoyed the intertwining folk-lorish undertones which almost cast a dream like state over the narrative. I felt like I was drifting through the novel along with the characters. This book casts a spell over the reader- I felt very calm and peaceful as if all my worries slipped away.
The book also has spiritualist and magical elements which I found inviting. Don’t mistake this book as a fantasy novel; these supernatural quirks flavour this story and help shift the plot in the right direction, but you are always questioning what is real and what is magic.
It was incredibly hard to write this review without giving too much away. This story reveals so much even from the first few pages and exposes a lifetime from beginning to end. There are no spoilers in this review, I was sure to be careful!
If you’re looking for your next action-packed adventure or dark psychological thriller- this book is not for you. However, if you’re looking for an exquisite piece of writing that will make your very soul feel every emotion under the sun, look no further- this IS the book for you. The Woman Behind the Waterfall is a wonderful accompaniment to a warm summers day, or even a cold one in winter to warm you up! This story really is an all-round feel-good book that will stay with you for a long time. I don’t think I could ever get bored of this novel and could read it over and over again. Each chapter could be seen as a short story in itself, or even a poem. I believe this book should be on everyone’s bookshelf as a helping hand to letting go of the past and realising that there is always hope for the future.
How to get your hands on a copy
CLICK HERE for the author’s website
FOLLOW LEONORA MERIEL!
I hope you all enjoyed the review! And now for that announcement… Leonora Meriel will be doing an author interview right here on my blog! Oh, did I mention it’s an interview with a twist!? Stay tuned! Happy reading! Lx
Thank you Leonora for an amazing signed copy of The Woman Behind The Waterfall!