#BookReview: The Separation by Dinah Jefferies

Reviewer: Annie

I received a review copy

The Separation by Dinah JefferiesSummary:

The Separation, Dinah Jefferies’ stunning debut novel, is the heartbreaking tale of a family fractured by lies and one mother’s love reaching across the distance of years and continents. A country at war with itself, a family divided and betrayed, a bond that can never be broken… Malaya, 1955. Lydia Cartwright returns from visiting a sick friend to an empty house. The servants are gone. The phone is dead. Where is her husband Alec? Her young daughters, Emma and Fleur? Fearful and desperate, she contacts the British District Officer and learns that Alec has been posted up country. But why didn’t he wait? Why did he leave no message? Lydia’s search takes her on a hazardous journey through war-torn jungle. Forced to turn to Jack Harding, a man she’d vowed to leave in her past, she sacrifices everything to be reunited with her family. And while carrying her own secrets, Lydia will soon face a devastating betrayal which may be more than she can bear .


Gripping from the very first page and it never let’s go!  Stunning, just Stunning!

Dinah Jefferies wrote a rather inquisitive novel of love and loss.  The entire story had me guessing, and just when I thought I knew everything, Dinah Jefferies would prove me wrong again and again.

We meet Lydia Cartwright’s family as they are packing up their household to move to England from Malaya in 1955.  After they move out, Lydia comes home to find the home empty; no husband, Alec or children, Emma and Fleur to be found anywhere.  She believes they have moved north to a city called, Ipoh, as part of her husband, Alec’s job.  The story begins to take it grip on you as Lydia moves North through the war-torn country in search of her family.

The train ride alone is full of events that still have me wanting to close my eyes.  Lydia does not make it all the way, and has to stop at her ex-lovers plantation for a period of time.  Jack Harding was just as great to her as he was when they were originally together.  I fell in love with both of them.

Emma, Lydia’s eldest daughter has been sent to a Boarding School because of a violent incident that took place between her and one of her Fathers friends.  Her father does not care for her much, so she was easy to pass on to the school.

But, let me tell you that these are just a few of the unbelievable travels and events that happen in this book.  Malaya was a country trying to get its independence.  So, they were in a state called, “the Emergency”.  This separated loved ones, broke hearts, hurt lives forever, and created a whole new world for the Cartwright’s and anyone else living in this region.  (Yes, I looked at a map to see where this was exactly)

There are so many secrets that are being held, that when some truth comes forth….will Lydia an Emma make it back to one another?  Will there be another chance for any of them?

Quite a thrill ride, one I did not expect!  But, I was happily surprised at all of the intricate details in this story.  You cannot miss a word!  Dinah Jefferies is a simply stunning writer!!!

5 Stars

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