Against the stunning backdrop of eighteenth century Cornwall, Demelza sweeps readers into one of the greatest love stories of all time.
Warning: Potential spoilers for those unfamiliar with Poldark: A Novel of Cornwall, the book that precedes Demelza.
Winston Graham’s story of Ross Poldark, his wife and the Cornwall society in which they live continues in the second volume of the series, Demelza. The narrative picks up not long after the conclusion of Poldark, in the spring of 1788. Demelza is giving birth to their first child, Ross continues to pursue his interests in the mining industry, and there are relationship entanglements abounding throughout the many levels of society. Although Ross and Demelza are now married, their life together shows no shortage of drama as they face challenges within their home as well as throughout their community.
As seen in Poldark, author Winston Graham’s writing is impeccable. His descriptions of the outlying areas as well as the minute details of his characters easily transport the reader into 18th century Cornwall, without becoming overly verbose or pedantic. While the majority of the novel is fairly serious in nature, he interjects humor now and again to bring some levity to his writing. There wasn’t as much of this found in Demelza, but a few laugh-out-loud moments did occur for this reader.
My enjoyment of Poldark was so strong, I’m not sure Demelza could have met or exceeded the same standard. There was a significant amount of time spent on Ross’s mining prospects, and while I am interested in that plotline, I could have had a bit less of it. I was also surprised at how much Elizabeth was set in the background for most of the story, save a particular episode near the end of the book. I enjoy the tension she brings to the Poldarks, and I hope to see more of her in the future. That being said, I did enjoy Demelza very much, and give it a hearty recommendation.
The multi-narrative technique in Poldark is repeated here, with Ross and Demelza at the center and myriad characters revolving around them in various ways. The other individuals in this cosmos bring a depth to the writing, showing us how the Poldarks’ lives are so interconnected to those around them. Although I have seen the 1970’s television version of this work, there were some issues I’d forgotten, making some particular deaths in the story become surprises all over again. Author Winston Graham does not shy away from writing appealing characters out of his novels. I was disappointed to see a number of them go.
Demelza seems to also have a bit more action than Poldark, if my recent memory serves me well. Drama that centers around deception, betrayal, murder, escape, plundering and gambling makes this an enjoyable read, keeping the chapters moving at a fast pace. Money, power and resources are not plentiful for all in this society, and this brings about several situations in which the resolutions are greatly anticipated. Indeed, by the conclusion of Demelza, there are still unresolved issues that remain open, and I must assume they will be addressed in the next volume of the series, Jeremy Poldark. And yes of course, I will be lining up to read that one as well. I have found a new favorite author, and his name is Winston Graham.
About the Author
Winston Graham (1908-2003) is the author of forty novels. His books have been widely translated and the Poldark series has been developed into two television series, shown in 22 countries. Six of Winston Graham's books have been filmed for the big screen, the most notable being Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Winston Graham is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and in 1983 was awarded the O.B.E.
Grand Giveaway Contest
Win One of Three Fabulous Prizes
Two lucky winners will each receive one trade paperback copy of Ross Poldark and Demelza, and one grand prize winner will receive a prize package containing the following items:
(1) DVD of Season One of Poldark (New addition to giveaway as of August 4th!)
(2) Old Britain Castles Pink Pottery Mugs by Johnson Brothers
(1) Twelve-inch Old Britain Castles Pink Pottery Plater by Johnson Brothersr
(1) London Telephone Box Tin of Ahmad English Breakfast Tea
(1) Jar of Mrs. Bridges Marmalade
(1) Package of Duchy Originals Organic Oaten Biscuits
(2) Packets of Blue Boy Cornflower Seeds by Renee's Garden Heirloom (1) Trade Paperback Copy of Ross Poldark and Demelza, by Winston Graham
To enter the giveaway contest simply leave a comment on any or all of the blog stops on the Ross Poldark Blog Tour starting July 06, 2015 through 11:59 pm PT, August 10, 2015. Winners will be drawn at random from all of the entrants and announced on the Buzz at Sourcebooks blog on August 13, 2015. Winners have until August 20, 2015 to claim their prize. The giveaway contest is open to US residents and the prizes will be shipped to US addresses. Good luck to all!
Comment Ideas (not required):
If you have a book that's been made into a movie or television program, do you prefer to watch the performance or read the book first? OR: Have you read more than one of the novels in the Poldark series, and if so, do you have a favorite?
THE ROSS POLDARK BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE
July 06 - My Jane Austen Book Club (Preview)
July 07 - Booktalk & More (Excerpt)
July 08 - Reading, Writing, Working, Playing (Review)
July 09 - vvb32 Reads (Preview)
July 10 - The Paige Turner (Review)
July 10 - My Kids Led Me Back To P & P (Excerpt)
July 11 - Austenprose (Review)
July 12 Laura's Reviews (Preview)
July 13 Peeking Between the Pages (Review)
July 13 Reflections of a Book Addict (Preview)
July 14 Living Read Girl (Review)
July 15 Confessions of a Book Addict (Review)
July 16 vvb32 Reads (Review)
July 17 Paige Turner (Review)
July 18 Truth, Beauty, Freedom & Books (Preview)
July 19 Marie Antoinette’s Gossip Guide (Excerpt)
July 20 - Laura's Reviews (Review)
July 20 - The Calico Critic (Review)
July 21 So Little Time…So Much to Read (Excerpt)
July 21 Poof Books (Excerpt)
July 22 Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)
July 23 Austenprose (Review)
July 24 Peeking Between the Pages (Review)
July 25 My Love for Jane Austen (Excerpt)
July 25 Living Read Girl (Review)
July 26 Delighted Reader (Review)
July 27 My Jane Austen Book Club (Review)
July 27 Austenesque Reviews (Review)
July 27 Laura's Reviews (Review)
July 28 She Is Too Fond Of Books (Review)
July 29 English Historical Fiction Authors (Preview)
July 30 vvb32 Reads (Review)
July 30 Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)
July 31 CozyNookBks (Excerpt)
Aug 01 - The Calico Critic (Review)
Aug 01 More Agreeably Engaged (Review)
Aug 02 Scuffed Slippers Wormy Books (Review)
Aug 03 Romantic Historical Reviews (Review)
Aug 03 Psychotic State Book Reviews (Review)