Author: Jo Bunt
Published: November 2013 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Category: Contemporary Fiction
In the Cyprus of 1974 Prudence, a young and pregnant army wife, was caught up in the fighting between the Turkish and Greek Cypriots following the Turkish Forces invasion of Cyprus. Pru, a little self-centred and unprepared for the realities of married life and impending motherhood. Her world was turned upside down by a tragic event and she felt compelled to flee Cyprus with a baby, but not her own.
Thirty some years later Leni, a food journalist, is in Cyprus having persuaded her boss she should write about Greek cuisine. She is actually trying to find out about her past after having suffered a personal tragedy and a totally unexpected and shocking discovery, which causes her to re-evaluate her life. Leni is resolute in her determination to visit Valrosha, the area of Famagusta which is now totally out-of-bounds to the public and is also the place where she was born. She feels a desperate need to understand where she came from and to find out about her birth family.
The two stories, one of Pru written in the third person and the other of Leni, written in the first, are woven together extremely well and give an understanding of both women and what motivates them. Given what happened to Pru, she did what she thought she had to and Leni has the overwhelming compulsion to delve into her past after such a startling revelation.
The writing is very descriptive and visual giving a real insight into the terrible suffering and tragedies of the invasion, something I knew virtually nothing about but found very interesting. I enjoyed very much the picture Jo Bunt paints of the Greek culture, the island itself....and the food! It’s all depicted so well and in-depth.
I like that, in the end, Leni realises it’s the people in her life that matter, the love and even the loss has made her the person she is and the love a mother has for her child is not always about blood ties.