||On the brink of a life-changing decision, Alexis Fielding longs to find out about her mother Sofia's past on the Greek island of Crete before moving to London, and when Alexis decides to visit Crete, Sofia gives her daughter a letter to take to an old friend, promising that through her she will learn the truth. Reader's Guide available. Original. 50,000 first printing.
||Alexis, a young woman in England, returns to her homeland, a tiny town in Crete and begins to unearth the tragic melodramas of her grandmother, great-aunt, and great-grandmother, and discovers how the nearby island of Spinalonga, a leper colony, played such a crucial and devastating role in their lives. Victoria Hislop, a travel writer making her first foray into fiction, conveys a wonderful sense of place and history.
|Editors Note 2
|| The Petrakis family lives in the small Greek seaside village of Plaka. Just off the coast is the tiny island of Spinalonga, where the nation's leper colony once was located—a place that has haunted four generations of Petrakis women. There's Eleni, ripped from her husband and two young daughters and sent to Spinalonga in 1939, and her daughters Maria, finding joy in the everyday as she dutifully cares for her father, and Anna, a wild child hungry for passion and a life anywhere but Plaka. And finally there's Alexis, Eleni's great-granddaughter, visiting modern-day Greece to unlock her family's past. A richly enchanting novel of lives and loves unfolding against the backdrop of the Mediterranean during World War II, The Island is an enthralling story of dreams and desires, of secrets desperately hidden, and of leprosy's touch on an unforgettable family.