Friday, February 21, 2014


Now available in Trade Paperback, THE FEVER TREE by Jennifer McVeigh (Berkley Trade Paperback Reprint; 978-0-425-26491-1; February 4, 2014; $16)!  When it was first released in hardcover last year, raved, “Debut author Jennifer McVeigh has created a fully realized sensory tour of 19th-century South Africa: You feel the grit of each dust storm, taste the mealie Frances chokes down, hear the cicadas scraping through the heat-parched air along with Frances' plaintive piano playing.”  McVeigh’s charmed story of loss and love has also been featured in Good Housekeeping, Women’s World, USA Today,  Washington Post, The Guardian, Daily Mail, and more.

With a perceptive and penetrating narrative, McVeigh unspools the story of Frances Irvine, a young Englishwoman forced by hopeless circumstance to immigrate to the Cape in pursuit of a reluctant marriage. There she discovers a strange new world where greed and colonial exploitation are bringing vast wealth to some and dire misery to countless others. As she struggles to find her place in this inhospitable land, Frances tethers her fate to two very different men: one serious and idealistic, the other charming and ambitious. When a smallpox epidemic threatens the financial dynasty of the most powerful Englishman in South Africa, Frances will be cast into a vortex of dangerous consequences—and find an unexpected, purposeful path.

A sweeping novel of romance and South African history that has been compared to Gone with the Wind, The Thorn Birds, and Out of Africa, THE FEVER TREE is an epic, heart wrenching tale not to be missed.

Review:  ~by Micaela

I give this book a 4.5/5 stars. This book is a historical fiction and revolves around the diamond business in South Africa during the 1800s. In the beginning I was expecting a normal romance book (the way that events unfolded in the beginning) where the end would be clear as to how it ends. I was very wrong. This book had many twists and turns and each one created a different ending in my head. I couldn't put this book down because I wanted to find out what would happen to Frances.

Jennifer McVeigh did an amazing job with her characters. The way she makes a reader think something about a character, only to be completely wrong about them later was interesting. I did find that Frances was annoying for most of the book, but that is how she is supposed to be. In the end I saw the drastic change she had undergone in the situations she had been through; I grew to like her. I also greatly disliked Edwin from the very beginning and for most of the book, but I grew to like him also. This book was a roller coaster for me and I enjoyed every page.

About the Author:

Jennifer McVeigh, who has herself traveled to remote areas of Southern and East Africa, also drew on firsthand accounts of life in colonial South Africa, as well as nineteenth century guidebooks and women’s magazines, in order to infuse Frances Irvine’s experiences with arresting verisimilitude.  You can find her on the web at  

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