Saturday, August 23, 2014

Recent Family Sagas

Sometimes children will ask for books that go on and on. These same children grow into adults who become engrossed and invested in fictional characters and the desire remains the same. For these readers we have family sagas. A family saga can be best described as a book, or better yet, a series of books that relate the lives of sets of interconnected families over time. A family saga that I have been particularly enjoying these last few years is Ken Follett's  Century Trilogy which chronicles the lives of five interconnected families in a sweeping saga that encompasses the twentieth century. Family sagas appeal to readers who are drawn to rich character development and who enjoy grand and sweeping tales of historical fiction.

Some other recent family sagas:

All My Tomorrows by Ellie Dean (Beach View Boarding House novels)

"Friendship, family, love and loss, and keeping calm and making do in the south-coast town of Cliffehaven during the Second World War. Join the Reilly family at their Beach View boarding house and meet the new arrivals Peggy Reilly soon takes under her wing. Jim Reilly and his brother are away fighting the war, Martin Black has been shot down and taken prisoner of war, and his wife Anne returns to Beach View with her baby to seek solace. And twin sisters from the east end of London descend on the boarding house causing chaos from the minute they arrive." Discover

Be Careful What You Wish For by Jeffrey Archer (Clifton Chronicles)

"Bestselling author Jeffrey Archer's Be Careful What You Wish For opens with Harry Clifton and his wife Emma rushing to hospital to learn the fate of their son Sebastian, who has been involved in a fatal car accident. But who died, Sebastian or his best friend Bruno? When Ross Buchanan is forced to resign as chairman of the Barrington Shipping Company, Emma Clifton wants to replace him. But Don Pedro Martinez intends to install his puppet, the egregious Major Alex Fisher, in order to destroy the Barrington family firm just as the company plans to build its new luxury liner, the MV Buckingham. Back in London, Harry and Emma’s adopted daughter wins a scholarship to the Slade Academy of Art where she falls in love with a fellow student, Clive Bingham, who asks her to marry him. Be Careful What You Wish For showcases the master storyteller’s talent as never before – when the Clifton and Barrington families march forward into the sixties, in this epic tale of love, revenge, ambition and betrayal." publisher

Hall of Secrets by Cate Campbell (Benedict Hall novels)

" In Cate Campbell's sumptuously detailed, page-turning series set in 1920s Seattle, the once-secure lifestyle of the wealthy Benedict family--and their household staff--must contend with the radical, roaring Jazz Age. . . For generations, the Benedicts have been one of Seattle's most distinguished families, residing in the splendid Queen Anne mansion known as Benedict Hall amid a host of loyal servants. But the dawn of the 1920s and the aftermath of the Great War have brought dramatic social conflict. Never has this been more apparent than when daughter Margot's thoroughly modern young cousin, Allison, comes to stay. But Margot is also shocking many of Seattle's genteel citizens, and her engineer beau, by advocating birth control in her medical practice. For amid a tangle of blackmail, manipulation, and old enmities, the Benedicts stand to lose more than money--they may forfeit the very position and reputation that is their only tether to a rapidly changing world." publisher

The Lobster Kings by Alexi Zentner

"From the internationally acclaimed author of Touch, praised as "an arresting debut" (National Post) and "a haunting, beguiling and beautifully imagined story" (Winnipeg Free Press), comes a powerful family saga steeped in the legends of the ocean. The Kings family has lived on Loosewood Island for three hundred years, blessed with the bounty of the sea. But for the Kings, this blessing comes with a curse: the loss of every first-born son. Now, Woody Kings, the leader of the island's lobster fishing community and the family patriarch, teeters on the throne, and Cordelia, the oldest of Woody's three daughters, stands to inherit the crown. To do so, however, she must defend her island against meth dealers from the mainland, while navigating sibling rivalry and the vulnerable nature of her own heart when she falls in love with her sternman. Inspired by Shakespeare's King Lear, The Lobster Kings is the story of Cordelia's struggle to maintain her island's way of life in the face of danger from offshore, and the rich, looming, mythical legacy of her family's namesake." publisher

Cavendon Hall by Barbara Taylor Bradford (Cavendon Hall)

"From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes an epic saga of intrigue and mystique set in Edwardian England. Cavendon Hall is home to two families, the aristocratic Inghams and the Swanns who serve them. Charles Ingham, the sixth Earl of Mowbray, lives there with his wife Felicity and their six children. Walter Swann, the premier male of the Swann family, is valet to the earl. His wife Alice, a clever seamstress who is in charge of the countess's wardrobe, also makes clothes for the four daughters. For centuries, these two families have lived side-by-side, beneath the backdrop of the imposing Yorkshire manor.  Cavendon Hall is Barbara Taylor Bradford at her very best, and its sweeping story of secrets, love, honor, and betrayal will have readers riveted up to the very last page." publisher

London Dawn by Murray Pura (Danforths of Lancashire)

"Readers everywhere are clamoring for books like Downton Abbey, the hit PBS Masterpiece Theater series that's taken America by storm. Those readers have become enthusiastic about The Danforths of Lancashire by award-winning author Murray Pura.
In this stunning conclusion to the saga, we find Lord Preston and his family are gathered in London in the late 1930s for what turns out to be a homecoming. The family is finally all together again, gathering in a way they haven't been able to do for years. But looming ahead is the summer and fall of 1940 when both the Battle of Britain and the Blitz will occur. Though the family is blissfully unaware of this soon-to-be reality, Lord Preston, privy to top secret info in his position in the government, has grave concerns; the gravest he's ever had, that England will be invaded. The Danforth family patriarch does his best to hide his fears with a cheerful exterior, but is he successful?" publisher

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