Monday, 3 May 2021

Then a Wind Blew - Kay Powell



Then a Wind Blew is an impressive novel set in the final months of the war in Rhodesia, before it became Zimbabwe, as seen through the eyes of three women. These women are all very different from each other but they find that their lives become intertwined due to circumstances beyond their control.

Nanye is with her sister at a guerilla camp, Susan is a white settler and Beth is a nun. Each of these women have witnessed the horrors of war which gives the reader a greater understanding of the politics as their stories unfold.

This is a beautifully written novel and despite the harrowing story that it tells, a very enjoyable read. The author grew up in what was then known as Rhodesia and it's very clear that she has a deep rooted love for the country as this shines through in the wonderfully vivid descriptions of the landscape. 

What sets this book apart from other war based novels is the fact that it focuses on the conflict from a predominantly female perspective. This was a first for me and until I read this book, was a point of view that I had given little or no consideration to, but one which needs to be talked about when you take into account all of the conflicts currently happening in various places around the world.

This is by no means an easy book to read and it's made all the more difficult by knowing that it has its roots firmly planted in fact and these atrocities actually took place. It's hard to stomach in places and I did find myself having to take a minute away from the story to contemplate how challenging it must have been just to survive during this time.

Then a Wind Blew is a poignant novel that highlights the struggles of  a country going through political change and the consequences that these changes have on its inhabitants. A truly haunting novel that will stay with me for many months to come.

With kind thanks to the author Kay Powell for my review copy.

Sunday, 2 May 2021

Blog Tour - Cuban Heel - Leopold Borstinski


Cuban Heel is the fifth book in the Alex Cohen series and the books just keep getting better and better. 

It's now the 1950's and Alex and his friend Meyer Lansky have moved on from Vegas and are now in Cuba looking to replicate their success in the world of casino's. Alex knows that if he plays his cards right (excuse the pun!) he can make enough money in Cuba to set him and his family up for the rest of their lives, but it's not going to be an easy ride. There's a coup going on and General Batista wants a slice of the action and this is something that Alex is more than a little unsure about. He hasn't just got himself to think about now as he's back together with his ex-wife Sarah and he's slowly rebuilding his previously turbulent relationships with his two sons and one wrong move on his part could jeopardise everything in more ways than one.

Alex is a bad guy but with a heart of gold and it's for that reason that I always find myself liking him more and more. He came to America as a young boy with his family who had nothing and he's managed to carve a life out for himself - albeit in ways that are questionable, but he's a loyal family man who always has his family at the forefront of his mind.

I love the way that the author once again cleverly weaves historical fact with fiction, as it not only makes for entertaining reading, it leaves me with a feeling that I've learnt something as well. All of the characters, whether fictional or real, are superbly written and the ineraction is so very believable.

Following Alex on his journey through life is an exciting ride and I would thoroughly recommend that you join him. If you enjoy historical fiction, crime novels or just have an interest in gangsters, then this fabulous series could be for you.

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                                               About the author

Photo courtesy of Leopold Borstinski

Leopold Borstinski is an independent author whose past careers have included financial journalism, business management of financial software companies, consulting and product sales and marketing, as well as teaching.

There is nothing he likes better so he does as much nothing as he possibly can. He has travelled extensively in Europe and the US and has visited Asia on several occasions. Leopold holds a Philosophy degree and tries not to drop it too often.

He lives near London and is married with one wife, one child and no pets.

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 Check out the rest of the blog tour with these fabulous blogs:

You can find out more about Leopold, his books and connect with him using the links below:


With kind thanks to Emma at Damppebbles Blog Tours for my stop on the blog tour and author Leopold Borstinski for the review copy.