Sep 19, 2012
Author: Erika Robuck
Publisher: New American Library
Publication Date: September 4, 2012
“She remembered when Hemingway had planted a banyan at his house and told her its parasitic roots were like human desire. At the time she’d thought it romantic. She hadn’t understood his warning.”
In Depression-era Key West, Mariella Bennet, the daughter of an American fisherman and a Cuban woman, knows hunger. Her struggle to support her family following her father’s death leads her to a bar and bordello, where she bets on a risky boxing match...and attracts the interest of two men: world-famous writer, Ernest Hemingway, and Gavin Murray, one of the WWI veterans who are laboring to build the Overseas Highway.
When Mariella is hired as a maid by Hemingway’s second wife, Pauline, she enters a rarified world of lavish, celebrity-filled dinner parties and elaborate off-island excursions. As she becomes caught up in the tensions and excesses of the Hemingway household, the attentions of the larger-than-life writer become a dangerous temptation...even as the reliable Gavin Murray draws her back to what matters most. Will she cross an invisible line with the volatile Hemingway, or find a way to claim her own dreams? As a massive hurricane bears down on Key West, Mariella faces some harsh truths...and the possibility of losing everything she loves.
Mariella is struggling to keep her sisters fed, a house over her family's head and her mother alert to the life around her while somehow finding just a small amount of joy in her own young life. At only 20, she's often hungry, always tired and knows her dreams are nearly impossible to achieve. Then 2 things happen at the same time.
She meets Hemingway and he is all that he has always been described as. Not the nicest man, nor the cleanest or the most likable. But he is magnetic. While he teases and plays with her, she can't help but be drawn to him.
At the same time she meets Gavin. Ex-military, kind, warm, caring. He falls madly in love with her but she remains torn between the two men, each holding their own charms.
A story that takes place during one year, and one fierce hurricane. You spend the entire story wondering who will end up being the father of her 25 year old son that is presented in the prologue.
A good story, you like the characters, and you can totally understand a young girl's attraction to a man who's larger than life and his ability to turn her head. She's strong willed and used to doing what it takes to provide for her family, but she's still not immune to charm and attention.
Reviewed by Idgie. If you would like to have the Dew review a book, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org