Title: The Goldminer’s Sister
Author: Alison Stuart
Published: July 8th 2020
Publisher: Mira – AU
Genres: Fiction, Historical, Romance
Rating: 5 stars
Gold is a fever. Will it lead her to love … or death? A suspenseful romance set on the turbulent goldfields of 1870s Australia, for readers of The Postmistress and The Woman in the Green Dress.
‘There are people in this town with the gleam of gold in their eyes and cold steel in their hearts.’
1873. Eliza Penrose arrives in the gold mining town of Maiden’s Creek in search of her brother, planning to make a new life for herself. Instead she finds a tragic mystery – and hints of betrayals by those closest to her.
Mining engineer Alec McLeod left Scotland to escape the memory of his dead wife and child. Despite the best efforts of the eligible ladies of Maiden’s Creek, Alec is determined never to give his heart again.
As lies and deceit threaten Eliza’s life, Alec steps in – although he has problems of his own, as he risks his livelihood and those he holds dear to oppose the dangerous work practices at the Maiden’s Creek Mine.
When disaster draws the pieces of the puzzle together, Eliza and Alec must save each other – but is it too late?
‘Please don’t patronise me, Uncle. I am not a girl. I am twenty five years old and I have been making my own way in the world for the last five years.’
Family, love, loyalty, mystery and plenty of determination comes into play in Alison Stuart’s The Goldminer’s Sister. A glimpse back in time to colonial Australia, we bear witness to the compelling journey of Eliza Penrose as she works to uncover the plot of betrayal and intrigue surrounding her brother’s mysterious death. I have a great deal of respect for this author and historical fiction title, The Goldminer’s Sister was a five star read.
The Goldminer’s Sister regales the consuming tale of a young woman who hopes that her journey from the UK to Australia will unite her with her beloved brother. However, when Eliza sets foot on Australia’s shores, a tragic accident has seen her brother lose his life. Eliza is incredibly loyal and protective of her brother and she knows that his death was not accidental, it was clearly intentional. Eliza is deeply suspicious of someone close to her, who she believes was involved in her brother’s death. While searching for answers to her brother’s untimely death, Eliza is acquainted with Alec McLeod, a mining engineer specialist who has settled in the town of Maiden’s Creek from Scotland. The two make a tentative connection, but Alec keeps his heart locked, still grieving over the loss of his wife and child back in Scotland. When the mine where Eliza’s brother worked takes some dangerous and underhanded steps in its operations, lives are put at risk. Eliza and Alec must work together to expose the lies, deceit and treachery of the mine before more lives are lost. Can they also find love in the process?
What a superb example of a well versed Australian historical fiction title The Goldminer’s Sister turned out to be! I enjoyed absolutely every moment of this book, I savored every page and I didn’t want this wonderful story to end. Alison Stuart has a brand new fan and I will be making a concerted effort to ensure that I pick up every single new Alison Stuart title as soon as it is released.
Alison Stuart is a fantastic Australian storyteller and she is a real asset to the Australian historical fiction industry. The Goldminer’s Sister is padded out by plenty of rich and detailed historical research, which can be evidenced both through the stunning narrative, but also in the accompanying author’s note. I was completely absorbed in the period detail, historical information and location specific descriptions featured in The Goldminer’s Sister. The only thing that could top this novel would be a firsthand visit to the site of the area in which the fictional town of Maiden’s Creek is set. I can only hope that this will happen once our state borders open again!
What a formidable force Eliza Penrose proved to be! A pioneer and trailblazer of this era, it wasn’t an easy time to be a woman, especially an enterprising one at that. I admired Eliza’s can-do attitude, her relentless pursuit for justice for her brother’s killer and her inability to give up on her mission to bring the mine’s underhanded operations to ransom. What an inspiring historical heroine! Stuart does a magnificent job of illuminating her leads, along with the minor characters. Each was so carefully drawn that I felt like I knew them inside and out.
The Goldminer’s Sister contains the perfect blend of romance, mystery, action and history. The romance was intertwined nicely within the narrative, so it never overtook the main events, but it was just enough to make my heart beat a little faster. The action and intrigue is also integrated very well within the unfolding narrative. I enjoyed the thrills and tension this aspect of the story provided. The history, along with the focus on the lack of rights, free choice and constraints on women at this time was highlighted extremely well by Alison Stuart.
With an astonishing link to Australia’s mining past, The Goldminer’s Sister proved to be an absolute winner.
The Goldminer’s Sister by Alison Stuart was published on 8th July 2020 by Mira – AU. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.
To learn more about the author of The Goldminer’s Sister, Alison Stuart, visit here.
*I wish to thank Harlequin Australia for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes.
The Goldminer’s Sister is book #77 of the Australian Women Writers Challenge