Tuesday 9 November 2010

Review: The Silver Locket - Margaret James

Genre: Historical fiction/romance, women's fiction
Pages: 336
Published: November 2010 Choc-Lit

If life is cheap, how much is love worth? It's 1914 and young Rose Courtenay has a decision to make. Please her wealthy parents by marrying the man of their choice - or play her part in the war effort? The chance to escape proves irresistible and Rose becomes a nurse. Working in France, she meets Lieutenant Alex Denham, a dark figure from her past. He's the last man in the world she'd get involved with - especially now he's married. But in wartime nothing is as it seems. Alex's marriage is a sham and Rose is the only woman he's ever wanted. As he recovers from his wounds, he sets out to win her trust. His gift of a silver locket is a far cry from the luxuries she's left behind. What value will she put on his love?

Rose Courtenay has had a privileged upbringing, but she is bored of it and she does not want to marry the man her parent's tell her to marry. The big war had started and she runs away to become a nurse. In France she meets Alex Denham, a boy from her past, he has a bad reputation and he is married. But still she falls on love.

My thoughts:
I was not sure about Alex, I mean he got the girl pregnant, and married her, very good, and proper considering, but then he wants to flee his marriage because all along he was in love with Rose. So I felt kind of, you made your bed, now just lay in it! But still he really loved Rose, oh it was hard, I did fall in the end, because he has just done the right thing, and I did wonder if that kid was even his. His wife was a horrid golddigger so her I did not like one bit.

Rose then, she was nice, and she wanted more from life. Can't blame her for falling for a handsome soldier, even if he is married.

There was also a sidestory with two sisters, one a friend of Rose and fellow nurse, the other one, well I can't say, spoiler alert. But via her I learnt something about a side character in the book. Something not nice.

I had wished for more war, I know, that sounds strange but this war was the last honest one, it was more between soldiers than what war is these days. And I felt there was not enough of the plight and horror. But then again that was perhaps could so it could focus on these two. Because this story was about two people running from problems, but at the same time finding themselves and doing courageous things. It was not so much about the romance, it was there, but it was more the growing they did, and how they tried to put things right.

Final thoughts and recommendation.
I felt it was a bit jumpy at times, and I actually think this could have been a good book written in letterform. Or I am just obsessed with war and letters.
Who to recommend it to,sure there is romance, there is war, so perhaps if you want a bit more drama with your fiction, but still some romance. And also an interesting book about WWI. I think it might get a 3, just because I wanted more war, but then I am weird.

Reason for reading:
Always been fascinated with WWI

Cover: Very fitting.

From the publisher


  1. B,

    As I was reading your review I was thinking to myself - Oh, B is just a romantic at heart - and then you said you wanted more war. LOL


  2. Great review! I have this book on my wishlist. I see there's a lot of drama and romance, just the sort of thing I like.

  3. Wonderful review, B :)

    I think The Silver Locket sounds like it could be a great read. I'm not to worried about it not being to much war, so I guess my taste is a little different there :)

  4. I wonder what the story would have been like if Alex's wife was likable. Of course then you'd really have to work to like Alex, but might still be an interesting twist. Might have given you a different type of war in the book. ;)

    btw, you have been tagged!!! Hee hee...

  5. There is something about war books written in epistolary format. I have just picked up another one - a Bloomsbury one called Henrietta's War which is written as letters.

  6. The cover of this book is very beautiful. I like it. And then the story..yeah it sounds really good and romantic. Good to hear that the wife of the guy is a golddigger and not that nice, this way it does seems right when he falls (again) in love with the main character. :P Great review. WW1 is very interesting..

  7. Looks like he should have had second thought before getting the girl pregnant. Haven't read anything about WWI so this should be interesting! I think it depends on the book how much war I wanna read.

  8. I think it might be an interesting read - something like "Atonement" (but it was about WWII. Thanks for your review and your honest remarks - they are always very welcome and appreciated!

  9. I'm just beginning to read about WWI, so this one interests me. However, I would prefer more of a war story than a romance, but it still sounds like it's worth checking out. Thanks for the review!

  10. Oh my goodness I am in love with that cover! Seems like quite the tragic story all in all!

  11. Thank you for this review. Its new to me too.

  12. I have this mental image of you marching around carrying a sign, "More war! More war!"

  13. Michelle
    Lol, I am a romantic at heart, but when it comes to war, all bets are off ;)

    That is sure had plenty of.

    Yes, I am so weird, I blame uni and learning about the WWI poets, I can't forget them

    Hm, that would have made it really hard, and I would have thought he was an ass. Luckily she was a hag.

  14. Vivienne
    Oh really, I must look it up. Of course this one was fine as it was, but I think it could have worked.

    She was not nice at all, first I was unsure, but no, she was bad. ANd she took him for all he got too.

    Oh you should read A Long long way then, that book was amazing, and a good book about WWI

    Oh that depressing book, made me so sad and depressed. I do want it at least a bit happy

  15. Anna
    Then I will give you the same advice, A Long Long way by Sebastian Barry. Beautifully written and it had a double meaning since it was about an Irish soldier and back home they were fighting for independence.

    So fitting for the time, gotta love that.

    You are welcome :)

    Lol, you are too funny!

  16. Love your honest review! This one definitely intrigues me, but it does seem like something is lacking...I'm crazy though :)

  17. Excellent review! You're going to get me interested in historical fiction :)

  18. LOL B!

    Great review. You are not weird at all. Sometimes wanting a few more battle scenes is okay. You know, romance and battles and soldiers. Or something like that!

    Interesting cover art. She looks very much like my Grandmother at that age, very authentic. ;)

    Thanks for sharing!

  19. Melissa
    Lol, perhaps like with me and the not enough war quote, yup I am crazy too

    I sure hope so, HF is the best, ok one of the best.

    I had not thought about it like that, but I see your point. Perhaps that is it. Did make me think about the book you have over right now.

  20. I agree that "Atonement" was a bit depressing but so was the war, after all.

  21. Wow, painful. I mean to lose the one you love for your own mistakes.

  22. Great review. I love how you started it :)

  23. Susi
    I do think I am in the strangest mood, 2nd book in a row where I complain of the lack of war

    So true, but there it just felt so cruel :(

    He was an idiot, but then she didn't even like him before they met again

    Thanks Juju :)

  24. Great review. I havent really read many books set during a war. This does sound like a good romance.
    I'm not sure I'd trust Alex...lol.


  25. Naida
    He is nice, who can blame the boy for wanting some loving when the girl he pines over does not even see him..still

  26. This one does sound like a good read...and I love the cover too!

  27. Staci
    She just looks so lovely :)

  28. hmm..what is choc-lit? is it anything like it sounds?? *grins*

    I *really* like your reviews. I'm unsure of the book itself but you make it sooo intriguing I'll take a gander at looking at it if I find it in the bookstore.

    I like a book that has letters in it as well. But there were none like Griffin & Sabine with the art and postcards with the whole story revolving the letters between the two.

    *smiles* You make my tbrlist grow. lol.

  29. Redd
    Their motto is, Choc-Lit where are our men are like chocolate, or something like that ;) Yummy!

    Griffin and Sabine, I must go and explore that now.



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