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» » The Waiting Time

The Waiting Time by Eugenia Price

The Waiting Time
The Waiting Time
Eugenia Price
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Thorndike Pr; Large Print edition (August 1, 1997)
534 pages
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Literature & Fiction

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RomanceLarge Print EditionAs usual, Price works in only the most primary of emotional colors; although the picture she paints isnt subtle, its sure to be treasured by her millions of fans. Publishers WeeklyFormulaic period romance, yes, but Prices saving grace, once again, is her thorough historical research and her insistence on blending a strong dose of real grit with the obligatory melodrama. Kirkus Reviews* A New York Times BestsellerSpirited Abigail Banes Allyn dreams that her newly married life in coastal Georgia will be idyllic. But her dreams are quickly shattered when a fatal accident claims her husband, leaving her sole proprietor of their rice plantation as well as the slaves that work it. Forced to forge a life for herself, Abigail becomes a feminist and abolitionist long before slaves can be legally freed and ultimately finds love again. This riveting novel brings a human face to a nation braced for southern secession and a war that threatened to tear people apart.
  • Qiahmagha
There were so many facets to this book. WWII, slavery, death, new beginnings. It's been awhile since I read this book. This young woman married a man 20 years older than her and he was a farmer while she was a hometown girl. The started fresh right from the beginning moving to Georgia ...and buying a new plantation. The husband was a good farmer and was rather well-to-do. They planted beans and other things and their crops were a success. So the man hired slaves to help with the work and a caretaker to oversee that the work was done right, etc. Meanwhile, the wife was rather lonely as she was expected to sit home and think up things to do around the house. And she got quite lonely as she was used to another way of life a number of friends. But this was what was expected so it went that way for a long while. Her husband would come home after working long hard hours on the plantation and was too exhausted to have a conversation at mealtime. He would barely talk to her at all. Since she truly loved her husband she wanted to talk with him. These were tough days that wore a person out. But their plantation continued to flourish and they became rather wealthy.... Fluffy
  • Mavegar
When revisiting past crimes, be careful what you wish for.
In 1988, the British Army Intelligence Unit in West Berlin, in an unauthorized operation, recruits a young East Berliner, Hans Becker. The go-between is a 22-year old I Corps junior stenographer, Corporal Tracy Barnes, who becomes Becker's lover. Becker is sent by his controller to East Germany's Baltic coast to glean information from radar base signals. There, Hans is captured and brutally murdered by Stasi Counter Espionage Captain Dieter Krause. Barnes suspects Krause's guilt, but can't prove it. And Hans remains the first and only man that Tracy has ever slept with.
Now, it's a decade later. The Berlin Wall is rubble, Germany is re-united, and Dieter Krause is the new darling of the German intelligence service, the BfV, because of the information he can provide on an old friend, Russian Army Colonel Pyotr Rykov, who's the influential personal assistant to the Russian Defense Minister. The Germans are showing Krause off, first to the Brits, then the Yanks. However, during a visit to the I Corps base in Ashford, Kent, Dieter is recognized by Barnes, who physically attacks him. Clapped into the base guardhouse, Tracy is interrogated by a veteran SIS man sent down from London, Albert Perkins of German Desk, but he gets nothing. Released from detention, Barnes goes to Germany to unearth the evidence to bring Dieter down. She's accompanied by Josh Mantle, a solicitor's clerk persuaded to the task by Tracy's mother. Josh, at 54, was once of I Corps, then of the Royal Military Police. Stubbornly his own man and awkwardly dedicated to principles, Mantle was discarded by the Army at the end of the Cold War. Now, he's tired and on the ash heap of imminent old age. Against his better judgement, but always for the underdog, Tracy's dangerous mission demands his participation.
THE WAITING TIME at first begins as a relatively simple tale of long-delayed justice. Well, ok, vengeance. But "simplistic" is never an apt description of Gerald Seymour's thrillers. Tracy's implacable, single-minded quest becomes almost a sideshow as Perkins, following Barnes and Mantle to Germany, has his own agenda to put the upstart BfV back into "its place". And another scarred veteran of the Cold War, the iron-haired and intimidating Olive Harris of the SIS Russian Desk, convinces the MI6 wallahs to activate her own scheme, i.e. to topple Pyotr Rykov (which would render Krause's humint pretty much valueless).
I'm a huge fan of Seymour's novels. But, in THE WAITING TIME, I reluctantly suggest that the plot is too complicated. He should've left out the Harris gambit and focused solely on Perkins, Mantle, Barnes, and Krause. When Olive arrives in Moscow to administer the coup de grace to Rykov, the local SIS station head asks, "Why are we mounting a hostile operation against Pyotr Rykov? ... Your game is the immediate destruction of a fine man." That just about says it all, and perhaps the only usefulness of the subplot is to illustrate that "our side" (and the gentler sex) can be just as ruthless as "their side" when it comes to destroying a man.
Seymour's forte is showing that victory is often Pyrrhic. The most tragic victor of this story is undoubtedly Mantle, self-crucified on the Cross of Principle. You might think that role would be Tracy's, but, as the reader learns in a surprise ending, she's not what she appears to be through 99% of the novel.
Overall, a jolly good show. But it could have been tighter.
  • Helo
Any book by Eugenia Price is a treasure. However, since this is the last book she wrote, I will treasure it
even more. It may be a little bit repetitive, but that is ok - her stories are timeless....This book is easy read -
and not disappointing.
  • Thomand
Love Eugenia Price's books. This one is no exception. She takes you "there".
  • Broadraven
I now have all of Eugenia Price's historical fiction books and looking forward to reading them all again. It has been a long time since I last read them.
  • Xarcondre
LOved it
  • Faehn
I certainly enjoyed reading about the Old South and the courage of the people to persevere during impossible odds.
Wonderful book.