• West Cork Literary Festival 2021

Song of The Nile by Hannah Fielding

Writing.ie | Book Reviews | Historical Fiction

By Swirl and Thread

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Song of The Nile by Hannah Fielding is published with London Wall Publishers. Described as ‘a passionate, slow-burning romance that will have you wanting to move to the continent for an old fashioned holiday romance of pure escapism’, this is a novel that is packed with sweeping imagery of Egypt in all it’s glittering colours. This book offers readers the joy of absolute escapism to another era, to a time when society was on the cusp of change, yet traditions were very much rigidly respected and invoked.

Following a harrowing few years at the cold face of nursing in London during the war, Aida El Masri arrives home to Luxor. Times have changed for Aida and she is now no longer the terrified and traumatised young woman who left her home eight years previously following an event that shook her world. Her home is a vast estate that has been kept going in her absence but now Aida needs to make decisions on her life and her future. Her mother died many years ago leaving Aida with her father who she had loved dearly. Her mother was English and her father Egyptian. Against the wishes of their families they had married and created a new life, one filled with love and respect. A marriage to the son of the adjoining landowner had always been pre-destined for Aida. Phares Pharaony was the son of her father’s best friend Kamel Pharaony. Although a few years older than Aida, Phares was a respectable choice, a solid individual and their union would bind two very wealthy estates, cementing their position in Luxor’s society and beyond. But, at eighteen, Aida’s father was arrested, framed for a crime he did not commit. As the jury found him guilty, his heart gave up and he collapsed in the courtroom, dying in front of Aida’s eyes. Aida, distraught, hears a rumour that it was Kamel Pharaony who was responsible and, upset, now unable to stay in Luxor, Aida leaves for England. Over the following years she worked hard in her new found career as a nurse, witnessing first hand the horrors of war, but now finally she arrives home with the intention of sorting out her affairs and finally uncovering the truth behind her father’s victimisation.

Aida is opinionated and strong-willed. Her stubborn nature is not a trait that is accepted by many in Egyptian society. Her attitude has changed and she refuses to bend to the whims and desires of this world she now inhabits. She fully reembraces the fashion and the comforts, all that she had missed while overseas but she will not be pressurised into an organised marriage to a man she now sees as the son of her greatest enemy. Aida see Phares Pharaony as a man who, like others of his stature, wants a woman to be submissive, a woman who obeys. It’s very clear that many men lust after Aida but it is Phares who challenges her the most and, against all her wishes, leaves her confused and wanting more. Aida is a breath of fresh air on her return but her stormy personality soon irritates some people and she finds herself a thorn in the side of many.

Song of the Nile is an intensely racy, sensual and steamy read set against the lush backdrop of Upper Egypt. Hannah Fielding writes about her homeland with a knowledge and a passion that brings all the senses very much to life. The colours, the scents, the sounds are all very vividly described….

<“A realm of sultry heat and mystifying intrigue, of evocative colour and spine-tingling sensation, of vivid settings and exotic cultures, of whispered attractions and gentle caresses, of all-consuming passion and all-conquering love.” – Hannah Fielding

When reading Song of the Nile, the reader is transported away from their own lives into a world of bygone years when society, and its treatment of women, was very different to the world many of us live in today.

Song of the Nile is escapism, very passionate escapism, perfect for all who like to be seduced and swept away into a fictional world filled with desire, longing and very powerful attractions set in the most incredible landscape, that of the exotic and lush Upper Egypt of the post-war years.

(c) Swirl and Thread

Order your copy online here.

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