Anne Bonny #GuestPost The Summer Will Come by @schristodoulou2 – Cyprus The Island of Aphrodite #HistoricalFiction #1950s #Cyprus @rararesources

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The Summer Will Come by Soulla Christodoulou
Set in the 1950s, the story begins in Cyprus. EOKA, British rule, and the fight for Enosis (unity) disrupt the world of two Greek Cypriot families, living in different villages on the island. They are desperately trying to cope with the unpredictability of this fractious time. Circumstances over a five-year period push both families to escape to London where, as immigrants, they struggle to settle, face new challenges, trauma and cope with missing their homeland’s traditions and culture. Both families’ lives cross paths in London and it seems that happier beginnings could be theirs. But at what cost? A story of passion for a country in turmoil, family love, loyalty and treachery and how, sometimes, starting over isn’t always as imagined.

Guest Post:

Cyprus – The Island of Aphrodite

Thank you so much for inviting me to talk about Cyprus as part of the blog tour celebrating the release of my second novel, The Summer Will Come, on the 25th March. Cyprus is a country you can’t talk about without mentioning the passion of its people, the beautiful climate, landscapes and history. It’s a country full of the hospitality that is so much a part of its people as it is of its culture and traditions.

It’s the homeland of my parents and their parents and ancestors before them going back many generations and although I’m British born I have a deep love and affinity with the island said to be the birthplace of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. Tourists flock to Aphrodite’s Rock where she’s said to have risen from the waters and thousands visit her birthplace in the mountains of Paphos, where a waterfall marks the Baths of Aphrodite. I’ve been lucky enough to bathe in them before health & safety regulations made bathing in the waters unauthorised.

Cyprus is also the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea situated at the crossroads of three continents – Europe, Asia and Africa – and it’s the only country in the world which has its capital city divided into two halves marked by the United Nations Green Line – a peacekeeping line – which separates the Turkish north and the Greek Cypriot south of the island. So strictly speaking the country should be referred to as the Republic of Cyprus since the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974.
The country is also quite unique in that it is the only one whose flag depicts the map of the country on it and has been in use since August 16th, 1960 when Cyprus gained independence from Britain.

If you’ve never visited Cyprus there’s so much to do and see there from lounging on the beautiful sandy beaches to nature walks and trails, visiting old villages and towns, castles and forts as well as the many ancient ruins. It has beaches and mountains, rugged inner terrain and quaint villages which haven’t changed in centuries. The climate is such that it is warm for nine months of the year and so you can enjoy a holiday there pretty much any time between March and November. Tourism is a major source of income for the island and its people. There are orchards of fruit trees splashing colour across the dry earth in summer; lemon, orange, pomegranate, apricot, carob and almond trees as well as fig trees and prickly pear plants. These are things I didn’t see growing up in the UK! I remember as a child, my parents pulling the car over on a dusty road and picking the fruit. It tasted like real fruit; sweet, earthy, whole. I will always remember the vibrancy of the colours against the dull browns of the mountains and the scattered villages creating a patchwork of little white painted stone houses.

However, Cyprus’s modern history has, in contrast, been dominated by enmity between its Greek and Turkish inhabitants. And it is Cyprus’ turbulent history and its more recent history which inspired me to write the book The Summer Will Come. My research took me back to the early 1950s when the country was under British occupation. Despite the invasion of the island by Turkey in 1974, the people of Cyprus still hope for unification and for many it will give them the chance to return ‘home’.

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Aphrodite’s rock

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The green line

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Soulla Christodoulou
Author’s Links

Author Bio:

Born in London to Greek Cypriot parents Soulla Christodoulou spent much of her childhood living carefree days full of family, school and friends. She was the first in her family to go to university and studied BA Hotel & Catering Management at Portsmouth University. Years later, after having a family of her own she studied again at Middlesex University and has a PGCE in Business Studies and an MA in Education.
Soulla is a Fiction author and wrote her first novel Broken Pieces of Tomorrow over a few months while working full time in secondary education. She is a mother of three boys.
She is a compassionate and empathetic supporter of young people. Her passion for teaching continues through private tuition of English Language and Children’s Creative Writing Classes as well as proof reading and other writing services.
Her writing has also connected her with a charity in California which she is very much involved in as a contributor of handwritten letters every month to support and give hope to women diagnosed with breast cancer. One of her letters is featured in a book ‘Dear Friend’, released on Amazon in September 2017.

When asked, she will tell you she has always, somewhere on a subconscious level, wanted to write and her life’s experiences both personal and professional have played a huge part in bringing her to where she was always meant to be; writing books and drinking lots of cinnamon and clove tea!

She also has a poetry collection, Sunshine after Rain, published on Amazon and The Summer Will Come is her second novel. She is currently working on a third novel Trust is a Big Word about an on-line illicit relationship that develops between two people.

***Don’t miss the other bloggers, on the blog tour***
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#Review #TheGoodAssassin by @paulvidich @noexitpress

The Good Assassin by Paul Vidich

Paul Vidich follows up his acclaimed debut spy thriller with a suspenseful tale of Cold War espionage set in 1950s Cuba, as foreign powers compete to influence the outcome of a revolution.

The CIA director persuades retired agent George Mueller to go to Cuba during the perilous last throes of the Batista regime to investigate Toby Graham, a CIA operative suspected of assisting Fidel Castro’s rebel fighters with diverted CIA weaponry. Posing as a magazine travel writer, Mueller reconnects with Jack and Liz Malone, old friends who have relocated to Cuba and are unable to see the coming upheaval in their lives, both political and personal. Toby’s betrayals aren’t limited to his mission, and Mueller must make a choice between justice and duty, between loyalty to his profession and to his friends.

My review:

I picked this novel due to two primary reasons. The era, 1950’s and the location of Cuba and I was not disappointed at all. The novel is spy based as described in the synopsis. Retired CIA agent George Mueller is called back into the fold, to assess and report back on fellow CIA agent Toby Graham.

With rumours that Toby is involved in assisting the Fidel Castro rebel fighters, there is cold war politics galore in this novel. The whole element of loyalty vs honour or friendships vs secrets is fully put to the test. From early on, in the novel I questioned everyone’s motives. But this is essentially an era where agents lived dangerously, not only within their job roles but within their personal lives also. There was a specific quote about Havana which I loved
“Havana saloons where the food is cheap and the drinks generous”
Time Machine anyone?

Aside from the glitz and the glamour there is political unrest and none of the central characters fully know what is in store for them. Cuba can no longer afford to continue to sell itself to the USA vis it’s trade in sugar, rum, beaches and women. Without expecting the USA to try and insert some political control. There are two sides to Cuba, the casinos and dance halls and the other more historic side where the quiet Spanish colonial still holds much influence. One thing, is for certain Cuba, is changing!
Will George Muller survive the change and find some distinction between assassin and friend?

This has to be the perfect historical location, Cuba seeps from every page and I felt I walked amongst the characters and their different struggles. 4*

Paul Vidich
Authors Links:
Twitter: @paulvidich