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THE SEA SCAPE by Mary Lide


by Mary Lide

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0-312-07799-8
Publisher: St. Martin's

Another Cornish comfit by the author of the Tregaran books (The Legacy of Tregaran, 1991, etc.), but this time stuffed with an awfully familiar filling. There's this beautiful bastard girl, Guinevere Ellis, living with her mam who serves as housekeeper (among other things) for a crude Bodmin Moor farmer. In between stints of grueling work in the fields, Guinevere roams the moors, teaches herself to read, and falls for sensitive young Julian Polleven, scion of the family that runs things in the coastal town of St. Marvell. He vows undying love, then disappears to fight the Boers, leaving Guinevere pregnant. So she deserts the farm, and in St. Marvell meets her surprise half-brother, a fisherman, then goes to work processing fish. Her baby, Lily, is born about the time she learns that Julian has died, and things get worse when Julian's awful father threatens to take Lily away from her. To safeguard the baby, Guinevere agrees to marry a nice fisherman named Jeb. But then Julian limps back from South Africa to intercede before things go all amok, and to further smooth the way, Jeb dies in a storm at sea. The story's a clichÇ on which all the Cornish atmosphere is wasted. Lide at low tide.