Book Reviews

Captive of Silence by Alla Crone

Captive of Silence is written with an eloquence matching the elegant author, Alla Crone.

Alla captures the time period (1923-1940s) with a finesse fitting her stature and the nature of the times and locales. To tell this difficult story in such a compelling way is an art that Alla has mastered. Toward the end of the book, I could not put this roman à clef * down. Alla’s writing is honest, poignant and genuine. I highly recommend Captive of Silence, especially to learn history in a fascinating way and to be inspired from a woman who rose above an abusive and extremely difficult life.

* roman à clef :  French for novel with a key, a novel about real life, overlaid with a façade of fiction.  The fictitious names in the novel represent real people, and the “key” is the relationship between the nonfiction and the fiction. — Wikipedia

Note:  Chris Smith, columnist for the Santa Rose Press Democrat wrote about Alla Crone in his January 21, 2014 article:

“[Alla Crone] was born in Manchuria to a woman who’d fled Russia after her first husband was killed by the Bolsheviks. Crone-Hayden grew up with White Russian émigrés and as a young woman endured the Japanese occupation.

In 1983, Dell Publisher printed her Winds Over Manchuria. Last year, 30 years after its release, her agent submitted Winds Over Manchuria to a publisher in Russia. In the first six months in Russia, the book sold 27,000 copies. ‘It shocked me,’ the author in Oakmont said. But it occurs to her that in the ex-Soviet Union, where people long had access only to the government version of the revolutions that followed a gray but bloody day in 1905, readers may remain hungry for other points of view.”

Click here to read the full Press Democrat article by Chris Smith.

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  1. mcullen Post author

    Alla comments: “Marlene, thank you for your in-depth review of Captive Of Silence. Your incisive comments brought out the very essence of the book, both on the historical as well as the personal level. Your editorial expertise shines through and I value it.”

  2. mcullen Post author

    Thank you, Alla, for showing us how to write compelling historical fiction: crafting a poignant personal story with genuine honesty, making history interesting!

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