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Demelza by Winston Graham
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Demelza (1946)

by Winston Graham

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5341818,880 (4.18)1 / 126

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I continue to enjoy the saga of the Poldarks of Cornwall. Demelza and Ross now have a daughter, Julia. Ross's rebellious nature continues to express itself, and when there is a shipwreck, he helps the starving miners salvage the cargo, which will help feed them through the winter. Enmity continues to grow between Ross and the Warleggans. The antics of Prudie and Jud continue to provide comic relief, and the story of Verity and Blamey continues. A new character and storyline is introduced with Dwight Enys, a young doctor schooled in the most modern medical science, who seeks to study and treat the ills of the miners.

The series only gets better. Highly recommended.

4 stars ( )
  arubabookwoman | Jul 14, 2017 |
Demelza is one of my most favorite Poldark characters. Her honesty and unwavering love toward Ross is tested in ways I cannot imagine, yet Demelza displays the fortitude of a miner's daughter with the class of the gentry she has become. Another win for Graham, this book easily sent me running for book three. ( )
  Nicole_L_Ochoa | Apr 29, 2017 |
This second novel in the Poldark saga begins with Demelza giving birth to her and Ross’s first child, a baby girl named Julia. Uneasy at the thought of her lower-class, illiterate relatives mixing with Ross’s family and friends among the gentry, Demelza decides to hold two different parties for Julia’s christening. Of course, this plan goes terribly awry and ends in social disaster — the first of many situations in this novel where Demelza struggles with her new position in society as Ross’s wife. Meanwhile, low copper prices are causing trouble for Ross and the other mine owners, and many of the mine workers are facing dire poverty. Desperate, Ross joins a risky scheme that would give mine owners more control over copper prices, but the Warleggans are formidable enemies to this project. Personal tragedies, reversals of fortune, and love affairs gone wrong (or right) all play a part in this novel, but ultimately it’s the strength of Ross and Demelza’s relationship that gets them through it all.

I enjoyed this continuation of the Poldark series, which I think is a little more eventful and interesting than the first book. One of my favorite aspects of this novel is the portrayal of Ross and Demelza’s marriage. It’s a strong relationship but definitely not a perfect one: they argue, keep secrets from each other, and frequently become trapped in misunderstandings that a little honest communication could have prevented. But I love that Demelza isn’t afraid to speak her mind and that Ross genuinely respects her, notwithstanding her lower-class origins. I also liked the introduction of a few new characters, particularly Dwight Enys, a forward-thinking young doctor who becomes a fast friend of the Poldarks. Overall, this book got me excited about reading the entire series this year, and I’d definitely recommend it to fans of historical fiction or period dramas.
  christina_reads | Mar 30, 2017 |
Another great read. I love Graham's writing style. He's got the bon-homie of Alexandre Dumas but it's not as long winded, and therefore, less tiring. I love Ross' spirit, how he struggles to endure and I can't wait to see how Graham furthers the plot with the Warleggans in the rest of the series. I like the development we've seen in Demelza and how her relationship with Ross has changed. I've said before that I enjoy the class struggle in the Poldark books and that continues to be true.

I love this passage where Ross is observing both Elizabeth (his former love) and Demelza, his wife:

"Hers was the loveliness of gracious, aristocratic womanhood, used to leisure and bred to refinement. She came from uncounted generations of small landed gentlefolk. There had been a Chynoweth before Edward the Confessor, and, as well as the grace and breeding, she seemed to have in her a susceptibility to fatigue, as if the fine pure blood was flowing a little thin. Against her Demelza was the upstart: bred in drunkenness and filth,a waif in a parlor, an urchin climbing on the shoulders of chance to peer into the drawing rooms of her betters; lusty, crude, unsubtle, all her actions and feelings were a stage nearer nature. But each of them had something the other lacked." ( )
  VictoriaPL | Feb 27, 2017 |
In this, the second novel in the Poldark series, the author has created real people and real situations, which draw you in and won't release you until the last page. I find myself caring for these fictional characters, wanting to reach through the cover to touch them.

Set in Cornwall in the late 1700's, the descriptions of the countryside and dwellings ring true, yet do not bog down the story, but complement it. Highly recommended. ( )
  fuzzi | Feb 5, 2017 |
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Ross slid into the room. She was playing the music from one of Arne's operas. He listened for some minutes, glad of the scene, glad of the music, and the bordering quiet. This was what he came home for.
He stepped silently across the room and kissed the back of her neck.
She squeaked, and the spinet stopped on a discord.
"A slip o' the finger and phit, yer dead," said Ross in Jud's voice.
"Judas! you give me a fright, Ross. Always I'm getting frights of some sort. No wonder I'm a bag of nerves. This is a new device, creeping in like a tomcat."
Hers was the loveliness of gracious, aristocratic womanhood, used to leisure and bred to refinement. She came from uncounted generations of small landed gentlefolk. There had been a Chynoweth before Edward the Confessor, and, as well as the grace and breeding, she seemed to have in her a susceptibility to fatigue, as if the fine pure blood was flowing a little thin. Against her Demelza was the upstart: bred in drunkenness and filth,a waif in a parlor, an urchin climbing on the shoulders of chance to peer into the drawing rooms of her betters; lusty, crude, unsubtle, all her actions and feelings were a stage nearer nature. But each of them had something the other lacked.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0006140831, Paperback)

A historical saga featuring Ross Poldark who rescues an impoverished miner's daughter from a fairground rabble and makes her his wife, but the events of these turbulent years test their marriage and their love. From the author of TREMOR.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:22 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

An impoverished miner's daughter, Demelza Carne is now married to Ross Poldark, who once rescued her from a fairground brawl. Her efforts to adapt to the ways of the gentry--and her husband--place her in hilarious and embarrassing situations, through which she becomes self assured, mannered and lovely. But tragedy strikes where least expected, and sows the seeds of an enduring rivalry for Ross Poldark and the powerful George Warleggan, and tests Ross and Demelza's marriage and their love.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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