Blog Tour/Review: The Moral Compass by K A Servian

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I’m delighted to co-host today’s stop on the blog tour for The Moral Compass by K A Servian. Set in 19th century New Zealand, The Moral Compass is the first in the Shaking The Tree series.   You can read my review of this fascinating novel below.


The Moral CompassAbout the Book

Florence lives like a Princess attending dinner parties and balls away from the gritty reality, filth and poverty of Victorian London.  However, her world comes crashing around her when her father suffers a spectacular fall from grace. She must abandon her life of luxury, leave behind the man she loves and sail to the far side of the world where compromise and suffering beyond anything she can imagine await her.

When she is offered the opportunity to regain some of what she has lost, she takes it, but soon discovers that not everything is as it seems. The choice she has made has a high price attached and she must live with the heart-breaking consequences of her decision.

Format: eBook, paperback (285 pp.) Publisher: SweetPea Publishing
Published: 17th October 2017             Genre: Historical Fiction

Purchase Links*
Amazon.co.uk  ǀ  Amazon.com  ǀ Barnes & Noble
*links provided for convenience, not as part of any affiliate programme

 Find The Moral Compass on Goodreads


My Review

Following a scandal that has seen them travel half way across the world, Florence and her hapless brother, Bertram, find themselves alone, orphaned and penniless.  ‘Everything she had taken for granted: their beautiful home, her many books, a cupboard overflowing with silk gowns, delicious food, being warm, clean and secure were all gone.’

A potential way out of their dire situation is offered by trader and shop owner, Jack Cameron, but it involves a course of action that Florence, or any other woman, would be reluctant to take.   However, it soon becomes clear that there is no alternative.  The man Florence loved is far away in England and unlikely to consider her a good marriage prospect now.

As things turn out, Florence’s worst fears are not realised and, for a time, she glimpses the possibility of happiness and even fulfilment. Unfortunately, others have different plans. Enter a good old-fashioned villain! From that point on, events conspire to thwart the happiness Florence has found, including ships that almost literally pass in the night!

I particularly liked how the reader sees Florence develop as a character: from naïve, cosseted girl, totally unprepared for the life into which she has been thrust, to mature, principled young woman.  Along the way she learns that what’s important in life is not airs and graces, the rules of etiquette or one’s position in society, but how you treat others.  If you like, through her experiences, Florence learns how to orientate her ‘moral compass’ to true North.   The message of the book is that people shouldn’t be judged based on their social status (or lack of it), their appearance or their race but by their actions and their values.   A message we could do well heed to today.

The setting of the book was one of the things that attracted to me to it and I enjoyed some of the early scenes which give a sense of the natural beauty of New Zealand and the culture of the native Maoris.  Personally, I would have welcomed more of this local colour.   However, I was captivated by the story and the ending definitely left me wanting to find out what happens next.

I received a review copy courtesy of the publishers and Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours in return for an honest and unbiased review.

In three words: Engaging, dramatic, romantic

Try something similar…The Indigo Girl by Natasha Boyd (click here to read my review)

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K A ServianAbout the Author

As a life-long creative, Kathy gained qualifications in fashion design, applied design to fabric and jewellery making and enjoyed a twenty-year-plus career in the fashion and applied arts industries as a pattern maker, designer and owner of her own clothing and jewellery labels.  She then discovered a love of teaching and began passing on the skills accumulated over the years – design, pattern-making, sewing, Art Clay Silver, screen-printing and machine embroidery to name a few.  Creative writing started as a self-dare to see if she had the chops to write a manuscript. Writing quickly became an obsession and Kathy’s first novel, Peak Hill, which was developed from the original manuscript, was a finalist in the Romance Writers of New Zealand Pacific Hearts Full Manuscript contest in 2016.

Kathy now squeezes full-time study for an advanced diploma in creative writing in around working on her novels, knocking out the occasional short story, teaching part-time and being a wife and mother.

Connect with Kathy

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