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Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. May 23, Sally rated it it was amazing Shelves: australian-author , historical , favorites. Told from the point of view of mostly female characters, the story is gradually revealed. Lisa, the granddaughter of Adam, starts an investigation into her family history when her mother mentions a girl named Angie in a lucid moment. As I was reading I made the following note: I have just read a very distressing scene where narrow minded Australians raise their arms against fellow Australians.

I wept at the scene - and then thought - nothing changes. Just swap the word German for Middle Eastern! They were bashed, their houses stoned and set fire too, their belongings desecrated, and then, the men at least, were shut up in concentration camps, sorry internment camps, treated as possible German spies. Even in the camps they were kept them in appalling conditions while the rest of Australia jumped up and down at the treatment of Australian prisoners of war, not caring we were doing the same.

Then some 20 odd years later we did the same again — only Japanese people and Italians were thrown into the mix as well. The whole story thread was handled very well all out in the open — a warts and all look at the historical events. The treatment of foreign nationals was unfair, it was unjust, it was created out of ignorance and it was an unsubstantiated fear and author Julian Leatherdale used it in his story brilliantly. The story is well paced, easy to follow despite the twists and turns and different time periods. Julian Leatherdale has gone onto that small list of mine where I write the names of authors who I would read their shopping list if they published it.

Do yourself a favour and read it. View all 9 comments. May 13, Shelleyrae at Book'd Out rated it really liked it Shelves: arc-are , provided-by-publisher , aussie-author. The shifting third person narrative unfolds from the perspective of several characters, Angie and her mother Freya; Adam's wives, Adelina and Laura; Laura's daughter, Monika; and in the present day, Lisa, Monika's daughter. Only briefly do we hear from Adam Fox, the owner of the Palace and the man who connects these three generations o Set in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales Palace of Tears is a generational saga of family, passion, secrets and vengeance from debut author Julian Leatherdale.

Only briefly do we hear from Adam Fox, the owner of the Palace and the man who connects these three generations of women. Lisa's interest in the past is triggered when, during a visit with her ailing mother, Monika laments the mysterious fate of Angie, the 'girl who broke Adam Fox's heart'. The name is unfamiliar to Lisa and curious she decides to investigate, contacting Palace historian Luke Davis.

Over the course of the novel, Leatherdale unravels a family history marred by untimely death, adultery, betrayal, heartbreak and revenge. What became of Angie remains a mystery til the very end with a surprising twist. Leatherdale firmly grounds his fictional characters in time and place. Adam Fox's Palace is modeled on the Hydro Majestic Hotel, opened in in the tiny township of Medlow Bath in the upper Blue Mountains and he ably describes the opulence of the hotel and the magnificence of the setting.

The author also references several relevant historical events of the first half of the twentieth century from the wartime internment camps, to the deadly influenza outbreak that swept New South Wales, to Arthur Conan Doyle's Antipodean tour, enriching the story with intriguing detail. The tale is well structured, despite shifting between multiple perspectives and time periods. The story is well paced, with plenty of twists and turns in the plot to maintain interest.

Descriptions, particularly of the setting are vivid, and Melding history and fiction, Palace of Tears is an entertaining novel and an impressive debut from Julian Leatherdale. The allure of the mountains had taught Adam that lesson The mountains offered up vistas of inspiration, horizons of wonder where the mind dared to leap and the imagination to soar.

Friedrichstraße station & 'Palace of Tears'

It enriched the spirit, breathed hope back in to the wounded heart. Yet there was always that reminder of the fall: vertigo's strange seduction that dragged you down the bright waterfall into the shadow of the valley below. Mortality, failure, despair - all these must be acknowledged.

Adam realised, over time, that his beloved mountains expressed the inner drama of his own soul. View 2 comments. May 10, Justine rated it really liked it. I was born in the Blue Mountains, where most of this novel is set, so there was an immediacy and a kind of intimacy I felt when reading this book. Given that the first part revolves around a young girl growing up in the mountains I could very easily relate to this main character! All that aside this is a wonderful story, darkly brooding in parts, but captivating in its telling of love and betrayal and family secrets coming to light.

I was lucky enough to win an uncorrected proof and I did feel t I was born in the Blue Mountains, where most of this novel is set, so there was an immediacy and a kind of intimacy I felt when reading this book. I was lucky enough to win an uncorrected proof and I did feel that there were some areas which needed editing, some unnecessary description and background which could be tightened a bit, but overall the story held my interest.

There is a lushness to the writing which I loved. I knew that there was a twist, but what I thought I had figured out turned out to be wrong and I certainly didn't pick what it was at all! The story is told from a number of different perspectives and across different times. I thought the current day characters were actually the least well-rounded, although still compelling, and I did relate a lot to the mother-daughter relationships described. I think the ending was not as I'd like personally The historical aspects were very good, the decadence and fun of the glory days of the hotel was clear in my mind as though I were there, and the history of the internment of German-Australians during WW1 was handled with clarity and compassion.

I found myself in shock at this aspect of our history which we are rarely told and I appreciate the skill with which the author has weaved this into the story. There is so much more I could talk about, but suffice it to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the read and plan on giving a copy to my Mum! Jun 08, Lee rated it really liked it Shelves: multi-character , australian , historical , arc. This ambitious long book spans three generations and more than a century.

Foundation of the "Haus der Geschichte" of Federal Republic of Germany

With a little google research of my own I found that Julian Leatherdale is not only a writer but a photographer and researcher who has worked on such projects as the Australians at War series Julian, you need to update your Goodreads profile, mate. But does an extensive knowledge of history make you a good fiction writer?

Well, yes and no.

Site of German Division

I appreciated the way the historical aspects were included seamlessly. The setting is gorgeous -- the Blue Mountains, Leura, Katoomba.


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Its beauty, and the danger that goes along with that, is again used perfectly in harmony with the plot. The twist near the end. So many books I read, the climactic twist is obvious, but this one caught me completely by surprise and I quite enjoyed it. I was struggling at one stage to work out how the book was going to end because there seemed to be no resolution I needed to reach, no burning question I had that made me want to rush to the end. The romance.

Tränenpalast - Wikipedia

The three parts. There are, as I said, several characters, all related in some way, and all equally important to the novel.

We get individually marked chapters with the name of the main character for that chapter, and the year, and it does chop and change regularly. Characters have flashbacks, find letters in attics, etc etc. Each part is not solely about the character that appears in the title of each part. It should be read simply to expand your knowledge of Australian history, which I thought I had a good grasp on before reading this, and yet I learnt some very interesting details.

May 16, Deborah rated it really liked it. While I'm not a fan of historical fiction, I appreciate multi-timeframe novels which delve into deep dark past secrets.


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I've also recently become interested in events in Australia surrounding WWI so was keen to read more about that time from history-lover and researcher Julian Leatherdale in his debut novel Palace of Tears. There is no doubt that Leatherdale knows his stuff.