Here I am at the fifth story in The Seven Sisters series by Lucinda Riley. I had only just finished The Pearl Sister and this arrived, I debated whether to wait and look forward to reading it or diving straight in.
I chose the latter.
Tiggy D’Aplièse is the fifth of the girls to be adopted by Pa Salt, the billionaire who has died at the beginning of all these novels and leaves clues as to where he found all of his daughters. I can recall Tiggy being mentioned in previous novels, but her presence perhaps is not as dominant as her other sisters. It is in this book that we learn about Tiggy.
Tiggy is intuitive when it comes to animals and has a sense about her, that perhaps the rest of us don’t. Despite opportunities that could perhaps take her all over the world, Tiggy follows a path to the wilds of Scotland when she introduces wildcats to the Kinnaird Estate and whilst she stays to settle them in thanks to an offer from the Laird, Charlie she also sense another purpose whilst she is there.
Chilly has been on the Kinnaird Estate for a number of years and whilst the way he chooses to live his life, might seem strange to many, his sixth sense knows that one day he will meet a girl and send her back home – that girl is Tiggy.
That home is Granada, Spain.
And so Tiggy and us are taken back to 1930s Spain, the Spanish Civil War is not far away. But in the shadow of the Alhambra, Sacramonte, is a village in the caves of the hills where the gitano’s (gypsies) have settled after being driven out of the main city.
Here is where Tiggy learns of another life, another world, a place where her spiritual side makes sense and her the vibrations that not just come from here senses but the feet of the flamenco dancers.
The most famous of the area being Lucia, Tiggy’s grandmother.
The author, transported me back to this place, the darkness of the caves, the problems that the gitanos faced being on the outer edges of the city, of society, of religion, of what was considered normal behaviour. But showed a community brought together by all that makes them different, the culture, the music and of course the dance.
Words are lyrical, they can take you somewhere, they can form pictures in your imagination. But in this book, the description of the flamenco dancing and the music, but the flamenco especially, just resonates off the page. You can feel the vibrations of the feet, as they stamp and form, as the beat increases, as the arms move in almost synchronicity to the feet, as the dress is moved in time to the music and as the appreciative audience are held spellbound by such a display.
And so the story knits together as Tiggy unpicks her past, finds out where she came from and why she ended up being looked after by Pa Salt. I have had my ideas since the very beginning of this series about Pa Salt and in this book, as Tiggy is the more spiritual one, she begins to pick up thoughts and feelings, that any of the other sisters, but everything just seems out of reach. Only time will tell as the series moves on.
From Scotland, where estates, struggle to survive, in a less feudal world, to the city and heat of Spain, where those lesser classes are kept on the outskirts and treated with contempt and suspicion. To the mystery of the unknown, to that sixth sense that perhaps we all have when all we have to do is trust in what we believe and what we see.
I think like all the previous novels, I have learnt so much about something perhaps I did not know enough about and also been transported to places I will perhaps never get to see. This is for me the beauty of dual narrative books such as these. The past is place which we should not forget because it is very much what forms our future as it is for the six sisters in this series of novels.
I wait with great anticipation for the next book and Electra’s story.
Thank you the publisher for sending me this book in advance for review. I am eternally grateful to keep learning of the seven sisters, to escape into a well written world and books that show storytelling at its best.
I am a fan of Lucinda Riley, but I write all my reviews honestly and feel lucky to be able to read her stories sometimes in advance of publication.
The Moon Sister is published on 1 Nov 2018.