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ALL THE FIRE
[ 3-day rental ]
ALL THE FIRE
His warmth stirred my soul and forcefully taught me to love.
For Sorrel, who was living in a small town in England with her parents and her fiancé peacefully, the visit of that man - Val - was an incident. A descendant of her ancestors who came to Australia from England several generations ago. In other words, she was her blood relative, but of course she had never met her. For Val's visit to retrace her roots, Sorrel's parents had prepared an old farm that was no longer in use. Sorrel welcomed Val there, but was surprised to see her when she arrived. What? He's actually a man? The roads are blocked by a blizzard, the town is far away, and there is only one bed...
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©ANNE MATHER / ERI KAWAMURA
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- The summary was way off 2
- JAB 10/20/2021
This is not about a woman who meets a very-very distant relative from Down Under. Plus, the next paragraph doesn’t make much sense, “Sorrel welcomed Val there, but was surprised to see when she arrived. What? He’s actually a man?”. What’s going on? I mean it was clearly stated at the beginning the distant relative visiting was a man, so why the surprise??? Yeah, the summary made no sense and wasn’t even align with the novel’s plot. Here’s my summary: Joanne (Yes, our heroine and not Sorrel) wrote a letter to her estranged father of twenty years that her mother had finally passed. She never heard anything from him till her father’s cousin/hero appears at her mother’s funeral. He informs her that father got the letter and wishes to see the heroine. The heroine travels to find answers to her questions and finds herself falling for the hero, despite having a fiancée. Yep, there’s my summary and here’s my review. The heroine wrote to her estranged father, whom she believed had abandoned his wife and daughter and traveled back to his home country. He never sent any letters or anything, but the heroine still thought he should know. He sends the hero as his representative to persuade the heroine to visit him because he’s on borrowed time since his heart attack. The hero’s appearance sends a stir among the heroine’s family and friends, practically shaking the hornets’ nest. He contradicts her statements of how the father never visited or did anything by responding he sent multiple large cash payments along with calling the mother several times with the plea to meet the heroine. His words only show that her mother never agreed to the man’s pleas. The hero tells the heroine the dad’s side where he came from Greece to England, fell in love and married her mother. Then he was called back home to run the company after his father’s passing. The mother refused to go because she couldn’t imagine herself living anywhere else other than England. Although, I may personally understand the woman’s reluctance on leaving her home country, the fear of living in a new country with a language you can’t speak along with in-laws you don’t know if they’ll support you or stab you in the back. Yet, it bothered me of the woman wouldn’t give the new home a ninety-day trial period for the man she loved. The man fought for the heroine’s custody and then gave up (probably saw the wreaking havoc of stress smeared across his wife’s face). He gave the woman large amounts of cash and left heartbroken. Although, I don’t know why the man didn’t take it upon himself for the next twenty years to request visitation rights from anything like weekends trips to summer stays. I mean, being heartbroken over your loss and respectful to your ex-wife’s wishes is considerate but we’re talking about a little girl who grew up believing her dad didn’t want her when it was the total opposite. The same can be said for the mom, even though she loved her daughter, she denied her the truth, time, and opportunities to build a bond with her father. The whole thing overwhelms the heroine who practically turns into an uncontrollable sobbing mess. The hero being a gentleman provides a handkerchief and comforting words. The heroine decides to go to Greece to learn more about her biological father who actually wanted to visit her. The fiancée shows worry, but is in full support of the heroine’s decision. The only problem I have in this scene is him not asking if he can accompany her on the trip. I know it’s not polite to tag along on a trip you weren’t invited to in the first place. However, there are a number of reasons why the man should go: 1) heroine will need an ally if the father’s family turn out to be a bunch of ruthless greedy snobs, 2)probably will want to introduce himself to the father as the fiancée, you make the whole proclamation of “I wish to marry your daughter and all,”, & 3) be the heroine’s emotional support in case the father clocks off earlier than expected. The heroine arrives in Greece and has one or two bumps with the welcoming; however, everyone becomes friendly with each other. The heroine is real surprised upon discovering her father is a wealthy man. They have an emotional and heartfelt reunion. Next, the heroine’s and her fiancée’s relationship. I didn’t notice it till the heroine described her relationship with the fiancée, “We’re childhood friends, more than Best Friends. We always support and trust each other.” The phrase would be perfect in describing her engagement if I didn’t feel there was something missing. I get the feeling their love is more familial than romantic. From then on things get only more twisted. The heroine starts suspecting the hero and her stepmother are having an affair because they’re so close and are childhood friends. That may be so, but she seems to be completely disregarding that 1) the wife is suffering severe anxiety in order to keep a stiff upper lip, whilst facing the reality of watching her husband die, 2) she has had to participate in all these conversations like wills, funeral arrangements and so that would break any person down in grief 3) uncertain of her place in her husband’s family, & 4) the hero is her friend and the cupid who introduced her to her husband. She even asks the heroine in tears to stay longer in order to make her husband smile. The hero asks her to consider having her honeymoon in Greece. We already see the distance enlarging between the heroine and her fiancée who opened up about his doubt of her actually coming back based on the hero’s presence. The hero is getting all jealous over his brother being close to the heroine, forgetting the heroine is STILL ENGAGED!!! Next, the heroine overhears one of the hero and stepmother’s conversation. She naturally misunderstands cause the whole conversation was all in Greek and she doesn’t speak Greek. Things get heated between the three: the heroine admonishes them both for their behavior, the hero accuses her of seducing him, and the stepmother decides to play along because she’s having a crazy moment. The heroine finally decides to leave, only informing her father and little sister of her departure. The hero finds out and helps the stepmother ease her anxieties before rushing off to the heroine. During this time, the heroine returns home to cancel her engagement with her fiancée. The man is angry, but he’s more concerned about the heroine’s wellbeing. His response shows he’s actually one of the better ex-fiancées. Just as they clear everything up and return to being friends, the hero bangs on the door. The friend leaves, but not before promising the hero should any happen to the heroine then he’ll go after the hero. Our hero and heroine clear the misunderstandings and confess their love for each other. They kiss and there’s the ending, but it wasn’t really what I hoping for. It’s hard to explain because the whole thing seemed to downplay on the drama and yet, there was too much. It just felt unbalanced to me.
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