#1 International bestselling novel set in 1920s Ceylon, about a young Englishwoman who marries a charming tea plantation owner and widower, only to discover he's keeping terrible secrets about his past, including what happened to his first wife, that lead to devastating consequences.
The Tea Planter's Wifeby Dinah Jefferies
The Tea Planter's Wife tells the tale of one family and their dark secrets. Set in breathtaking Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), this historical fiction is told in third person narrative. The novel has well-developed characters, including the likable Gwen and cryptic Laurence. The Tea Planter deals with hard racial and socioeconomic issues of the twentieth century, when Ceylon was under British rule. Author Dinah Jefferies addresses these subjects head-on, but their ramifications in the story are tragic. Jefferies additionally starts the book with a mystery, and while readers may guess several of the plot's twists and turns, the journey is still enjoyable. The real highlight of the novel was the stunning and vivid descriptions of the tea plantation and Ceylon countryside. Though heartbreaking at times, The Tea Planter's Wife is a good read.
Review of an Advance Reading Copy
Profanity/Language: 15 religious exclamations; 12 mild obscenities; 3 derogatory names; 1 f-word derivative.
Violence/Gore: A few secondhand reports of violence; a few brief incidents of violence including a mob and a character kicking an old man.
Sex/Nudity: Multiple incidents of kissing; a non-sexual depiction of nudity; a few sexual references; a few brief scenes of touching; several implied incidents of sexual activity; a few brief scenes of nudity with sexual innuendo, including a nude painting; a few mature discussions regarding sex, including the conception of a baby; a few brief scenes of sexual activity without explicit details between adults; an explicit description of sex with nudity between adults.
Mature Subject Matter:
Racial prejudice, mental illness, suicide, death of a child, blackmail, abandonment, mobs, the Great Depression, drowning, Hitler, diphtheria, homesickness, slave labor, poisoning, extramarital affairs.
Alcohol / Drug Use:
Several scenes of social drinking; a character is described several times as "drinking in excess".
Reviewed By Rachel