The Threshing Circle by Neil Grimmett

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Some authors can transport you straight into the location, environment and setting their story takes place in. Grimmett does that exceptionally well. You can almost feel yourself wandering the dusty roads of Crete, smelling the salty sea air and soaking in the atmosphere.

This tale starts in the past and the events of one night trickle like a ripple of water through time all the way into the present. Secrets once thought buried forever are suddenly alive and well and strutting through town.

One of the issues in the book, which is often swept under the carpet by people in these particular settings, is the way foreigners are perceived by native inhabitants of a country. No matter how long you live in a village, if you are not from there you may be accepted but will always remain a type of outsider.

In a way the story starts with one outsider, is reawakened by another and a third tries to understand the secrets buried deep within the past.

At one point I found myself disliking Kirsty, her actions and reactions. I was rooting for Barba Yiorgos all the way, despite his grumpy personality and demanding nature.Perhaps because I not only identified with the path of vengeance leading all the way back from WW2, I also agreed with the need for closure.

There is a poignant moment a few chapters before the end where the violence peaks and I have to admit I had to put the book down for a while. Why? Because of a very specific scene which is make or break for most of the characters.It is graphic in a sense that the author has created an image you are not likely to forget in a hurry. I came back to the story ready to accept the characters inevitable fate and the destruction which would come in its wake.

Eleni carries the bitter taste of betrayal on the tip of her tongue and deep in her soul. Kirsty begins to doubt the innocent nature of the young woman and wonders whether the ball was set in motion on purpose. At the height of her suspicion the invisible link becomes obvious between two people in the middle of the story. Nature and not nurture, blood and not water. As if it was always meant to be and the end was laid out and drawn in the dusty road with a bloody finger of fate many years ago.

This is a beautiful tale of betrayal, hatred, vengeance and love, and a vendetta stretching the span of a lifetime.
I received a copy of this book courtesy of the author.

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