For this blog tour we’re looking at a moving portrait of a loving daughter trying to understand her tortured artist father… and a protective sister trying to prevent her artist brother from becoming too haunted by the war they are living through. For this blog tour we’re looking at The Girl With The Scarlet Ribbon by Suzanne Goldring.
Moving Portrait Of Tortured Artist And Loving Daughter. This is an interesting dual timeline historical, one in which a man is at the center of both timelines… and yet his own perspective is never once actually included in the narrative. And yet despite this, the book does *not* come across as misandristic at all, as the two perspectives we *do* get – the man’s older sister in WWII Florence and his daughter in 2019 – are both seeking to understand him in their own ways. Thus, this book actually becomes an interesting look at how the experience of war ultimately shapes lives in so many divergent ways. While little of the horrors are shown “on screen”, some are, including a few murders, torture with a cigarette, general abuse, and a rape attempt (that may or may not be successful). Also discussed is how the Jews of the area are rounded up, gang rapes (alluded to but not directly shown), and how a citizenry can live with themselves not stopping either. So truly a lot of horrific stuff – and even after the Allies “liberate” the city, at least a few pages are devoted to the continued deprivations. Truly a well rounded look at a difficult and trying period – and the modern story of a daughter trying to understand the messages her tortured father left behind are solid as well, without having quite the horrific impact of the WWII scenes. Very much recommended.
After the jump, the “publisher details”, including book description, author bio, and social media and buy links.
Florence, 1943. A missing painting. A war-scarred city. A brave young girl on a black bicycle risking her life for the country she loved…
As the bells toll and arrogant soldiers torment her family, fourteen-year-old Gabriella is determined to act. She seeks out her old friend Stefanina, an unlikely member of the Italian resistance with her dark curls and scarlet ribbon. Soon the two girls are criss-crossing the river with deadly information in their bicycle baskets. But then one terrible day Stefanina disappears…
London 2019. Sofia is mourning the loss of her father, a famous painter. Desperate to feel closer to him, she begins to go through his paintings of wartime Florence, a time in his life he would never talk about. But then she realises one is missing…
Determined to learn more, she discovers that he had a sister she never knew about. She flies to Florence, the place of his tortured memories, to meet her aunt Gabriella, an elegant old woman living in a palazzo filled with roses. Therein a little bedroom, locked away from the world, she finds the missing painting, a tiny picture of a beautiful girl with a scarlet ribbon.
As Sofia uncovers the story behind the hidden painting, a tale of extraordinary bravery and terrible betrayal emerges. But will understanding her family’s haunted past bring her peace, or further heartbreak?
A completely compelling and heartbreaking story of a beautiful city, a violent war and a young woman’s daring. Fans of The Alice Network, The Nightingale and My Name is Eva will be captivated by The Girl with the Scarlet Ribbon.
Following an eventful career as a public relations consultant, specialising in business and travel, Suzanne Goldring turned to writing the kind of novels she likes to read, about the extraordinary lives of ordinary people. Whether she is working in her thatched cottage in Hampshire or her seaside home in North Cornwall, Suzanne finds inspiration in the secrets hidden by everyday life.