The Pearl Thief by Elizabeth Wein
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Thank you to NetGalley and Disney Group and Disney-Hyperion for the ARC, The Pearl Thief by Elizabeth Wein. Once again, Wein has crafted masterful historical fiction you can’t put down. Julie returns home for the summer from boarding school three days early and since no one is expecting her, she decides to walk around what remains of her grandfather’s home in Scotland that is being renovated to accommodate a new school. Instead, Julie wakes up three days later in the hospital with a head injury, no memory of what happened, and no one knows her identity in the hospital. It is when Julie wakes up to find good friend and librarian, Mary, ready to tell what little she knows, that this novel roars into adventure and thriller. As the mystery unfolds about what happened with Julie, there are many other things going on in this riveting novel of family, friendship, finding one’s place in the world and the courage to right wrongs. Through Julie’s eyes the reader is treated to the beauty of the Scottish countryside, their wonderful people (even the much maligned Travellers who rescued Julie), the rich history of her grandfather’s home, the pearl industry history and the compounding mysteries Julie, Ellen and Sandy are racing to solve. Julie, her mother, her brothers Jamie and Sandy, were authentic, wonderful, finely drawn characters. I cringed whenever Mary, the Water Bailiff, and other law enforcement officers belittled and blamed the Travellers, Ellen, Euan and their family due to their blinding prejudices and fear. Wein once again has crafted a beautiful, gripping, tense novel. Highly recommended!
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