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The Black Moon (1973)

by Winston Graham

Series: Poldark Saga (5)

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5241936,086 (4.14)1 / 84
The legendary Poldark saga continues in the fifth Poldark book Cornwall, 1794: The birth of a son to Elizabeth and George Warleggan serves only to accentuate the rift between the Poldark and Warleggan families. And when Morwenna Chynoweth, now governess to Elizabeth's eldest son, grows to love Drake Carne, Demelza's brother, the enduring rivalry between George and Ross finds a new focus for bitter enmity and conflict.… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
Perhaps my hopes for the fifth book in there Poldark series were set just a bit too high?

After watching the tv series and knowing all the events to expect in these 546 pages, I really thought this would be my favorite. But in reality, this was just way too slow for me. I found myself bored and wondering why whole pages (at one point an entire chapter) was necessary to the story.

That's not to say I hated it, just that it wasn't as good as expected. Hopefully, the next book will be less "detailed." ( )
  jesscombs | Nov 2, 2020 |
Book number 5 in the Poldark series. This is more about the life of Cornwall in 1798-1800. The French Revolution is taking place and there are reverberations in Cornwall. This book, more than the others, has demonstrated what a tough life it was for women and those of little social standing. Ended in a cliffhanger ( )
  Tess_W | Oct 14, 2020 |
Oh boy, The Black Moon, Book 5 in the Poldark series was a good one! These books are not stand alone, so if you haven't started the series, go back and start at the beginning.
In this book Elizabeth, Ross's old flame, who had been married to his cousin, is now married to George Warleggan, Ross's worst enemy. Elizabeth gives birth to a son, Valentine on the Black Moon, foreboding bad luck. Until Elizabeth's son from the first marriage, Geoffrey Charles, is ready to be sent to school, Elizabeth brings her impoverished cousin, Morwenna, to be his governess. At the same time, poverty and lack of opportunity bring Demelza's younger brothers to ask for help finding employment. This risks all Demelza has achieved for being accepted as a woman of standing, since her brothers are common, but family is more important to her. Before long Drake, her youngest brother, meets Morwenna and the two fall in love. Morwenna knows it's wrong, but can't help herself. When it's found out, tensions soar between George and Ross. Add to this, there is a revolution going on in France and a very close friend of Ross's has been captured. Ross becomes involved in trying to bring him back safely. Add to this, elderly cousin Agatha has been living with Elizabeth and George, even though neither is her kin, since this was the home she has always lived in. George barely tolerates her and she him. As her hundredth birthday nears, one of the few things that keeps her going is planning for her party. This infuriates George, who is determined not to bow to being the host. You'll have to read the book to find out more. ( )
  cjyap1 | Sep 27, 2020 |
You can tell that this was written 20 years after the first four books; there's a change in tone and focus. The earlier books skipped between characters' storylines, but still felt contained and introspective. This one sprawls all over the place, in geography, focus, and simultaneous events. It also becomes much more externally-facing, rather than focusing on the characters' inner lives. Not that it's not entertaining, but I miss feeling more acquainted with them.

I wrote after [b:Ross Poldark|25365667|Ross Poldark (Poldark, #1)|Winston Graham|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1429123693s/25365667.jpg|364846] that WG's writing reminds me of [a:C.S Forester|4921587|C.S Forester|https://s.gr-assets.com/assets/nophoto/user/u_50x66-632230dc9882b4352d753eedf9396530.png]. This book did and more; when Ross runs off to join the Royalist landing at Quiberon, there are tons of echoes of the Horatio Hornblower episode "The Wrong War." I could almost hear Horatio asking Pellew "but why were we there, sir?" I do like me some Napoleonic/naval history!

And finally, what a twist at the end! ( )
  beautifulshell | Aug 27, 2020 |
There are no spoilers for The Black Moon in this review, however, it's the fifth book in the series, so spoilers for the previous books cannot be helped.

I struggled with whether or not I would continue reading this series after the shocking actions of Ross Poldark in Warleggan. I am a fan of the television series, so I knew about Ross and Elizabeth's night of angry, passionate, consensual sex. The book, however, was different. It was rape. The actions of the supposed hero of the book left me disenchanted. I gave the book a favorable review because overall, the story is outstanding. Winston Graham has written a compelling story with fantastic characters. So in the end, I decided to continue with the series.

There's an author's note in The Black Moon that states Graham had only ever intended to write four books in the Poldark saga. He felt that their story was complete. It wasn't until years later that he decided to pick up where he left off. He cautions to not expect it to "solve everything, or tie up loose ends or to leave no new ones trailing. That isn't the way it happened at all." It was after reading the note that made me realize that in real life, justice isn't always swift, situations aren't always black and white, but a whole lot of grey.

The Black Moon, while continuing the Poldark story, focuses on other characters in the Poldark circle. Demelza's brothers Drake and Sam Carne come to work at the mine and around Nampara. Drake meets Geoffrey Charles and forms a fast, but forbidden, friendship. Drake is taken with Morwenna Chynoweth, Elizabeth's cousin and Geoffrey Charles' governess. You know their relationship is doomed because he is what they considered 'low born' and she, while penniless, has noble blood. Yet, I still yearn for them to find a way to be together. Demelza and Verity are my favorite characters by far. Demelza continues to be a pillar of strength for the Poldark family, as does Verity.

Geoffrey Charles is growing more defiant of George Warleggan daily, and it's hilarious. Dwight, now in the Navy, has been taken prisoner in France. His engagement to Caroline Penvenen is still kept secret from the majority of society. She spends most of the book yearning for news of Dwight. Elizabeth and Demelza both have a baby. And there's a possibility that Ross could also be the father of Elizabeth's son. Maybe we'll find out in the next book. George Warleggan is still George Warleggan. His character has been completely static throughout the whole series. Finally, Ross once more proves to be the hero he is capable of being. If only he can be the hero in his intimate relationships as well.

I'm happy Winston Graham decided to continue with this series. The characters are growing and changing, except George Warleggan, as well as the community in which they belong. The storyline continues to keep me captivated as events unfold. There are twelve books in this series, and I'm barely halfway through it. It's a long journey to undertake with such flawed characters, but I think I'm in it for the long haul.

Read more at http://www.toreadornottoread.net/2018/09/review-black-moon-by-winston-graham.htm... ( )
  mt256 | Sep 28, 2018 |
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Elizabeth Warleggan was delivered of the first child of her new marriage at Trenwith House in the middle of February, 1794.
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The legendary Poldark saga continues in the fifth Poldark book Cornwall, 1794: The birth of a son to Elizabeth and George Warleggan serves only to accentuate the rift between the Poldark and Warleggan families. And when Morwenna Chynoweth, now governess to Elizabeth's eldest son, grows to love Drake Carne, Demelza's brother, the enduring rivalry between George and Ross finds a new focus for bitter enmity and conflict.

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