Rosie’s Book Review Team #RBRT Cathy reviews Last Child by Terry Tyler

Today we have a review from Cathy, she blogs at http://betweenthelinesbookblog.wordpress.com

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Cathy chose to read and review Last Child by Terry Tyler

Last Child by Terry Tyler

Last Child by Terry Tyler

Following on from the impressive Kings and Queens, The Last Child tracks the fortunes of Harry Lanchester’s children, Isabella, Erin and Jasper. The narrative flows smoothly, with chapters from several of the main characters’ perspectives, each moving the story along seamlessly. Again, Terry Tyler very cleverly parallels each fascinating character with their Tudor equivalent, in a modern day setting and with her own unique interpretation.

Ex nanny, Hannah Cleveley opens the story the year after Harry’s fatal heart attack. Lanchester Estates is being managed by Ned Seymour, young Jasper’s uncle, until he comes of age, with assistance from Jim Dudley. There’s no love lost between the two men and Isabella and Erin support opposing camps which doesn’t make for easy business relations especially when Isabella finds out that Erin has sold some shares to Jim Dudley.

Jasper, at thirteen, is more interested in getting up to mischief with his friends, and other people who should know better. Grounded for drinking, Jaz (he won’t answer to Jasper any more) records his thoughts on a dictaphone at Hannah’s suggestion. Reading his take on his life is amusing and sad at the same time.

Tensions are running high at Lanchester Estates as Isabella heads the company after another family tragedy, and starts to implement her less than popular strategies. Disliked at work and lonely in her private life Isabella makes a relationship choice that is ultimately her undoing.

And Erin, beautiful and dedicated to the continuation of her father’s company, rectifies the consequences of Isabella’s reign at Lanchester Estates. In love with Rob Dudley, their on, off and on again relationship runs throughout the story, but determined never to marry, not having had any experience of happy ever afters to make her reconsider.

It’s impossible not to be drawn in by these very realistic and distinct personalities. I love the writing style very much, the humour and the easy, eloquent expression. The complex relationships and complicated family dynamics, the love, loss, and the promise of new life, along with the devastation of dementia and the complexities of mental illness are all written extremely well.

I also love Jim Dudley and Raine Grey’s romance and I’m so glad their characters weren’t too closely represented by their historical counterparts, they are two of my favourites and their relationship is very moving and quite tragic. This is so compelling and after the ending I hope there will be more to come!

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Book Review Challenger Review from Noelle

Today our book review from the recent Book Review Challenge series if from Noelle.

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She chose to review “Kings and Queens” by Terry Tyler.

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Terry Tyler’s book, Kings and Queens, is a fast-paced romp through the life of England’s Henry VIII, but set in modern times with modern characters. For anyone who knows the story of Henry’s six wives (divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived) and for those with a wicked enjoyment of the foibles of historical figures, this book roars.

Even if you are not a fan of English history and know nothing of the metaphors and references the author has slyly inserted into the story, this book will draw you in as contemporary fiction, demonstrating that the human foibles are ageless and that a historical family drama can repeat itself.

Harry Lanchester, red-headed, fun-loving, ne’er do well, inherits the reins of a large property development company when his older brother Alex, the heir apparent, is killed. His story is told by the contemporary counterparts of each of Henry VIII’s six wives – actually five wives and a nanny who loves Harry but is rejected. The calm and insightful perspective of Will Brandon, Henry’s best and oldest friend, weaves together their unique and compelling voices.

The author has done a yeoman’s job of integrating historical figures from Tudor times. Charles Brandon, for example, was Henry VIII’s oldest friend, once married to his sister, Mary Tudor. The modern Will Brandon was married for a time to Harry’s sister Dahlia. Other names with Tudor ties – Rochford, Blunt, Wyatt, Seymour and Dudley – find their way into the narrative.

The characters are wonderful – from the self-indulgent, over-bearing, charismatic Harry, to the motherly older Cathy, the stunning and driven Annette, the sweet and simple Jenny, the frumpish but practical nanny Hannah, the former lap dancer Keira, and the patient and understanding final wife, Kate. These women lead you down the twisting, never-boring road of life in the Lanchester family.

This is a great read, and I’m looking forward to a sequel featuring the Lanchester children, especially the son Harry wanted so much he was willing to marry again and again to get: the spoiled and entitled Jasper.

Kings and Queens is rich in the sins and peccadillos of the wealthy and entitled, those that captivate readers across the board. Bravo to Terry Tyler for giving us such a sumptuous read with a grand historical twist.

Find a copy from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com