House of Orphans (2020)

House of Orphans Helen Dunmore House of Orphans Finland and the Russian Empire enforces a brutal policy to destroy Finland s freedom and force its people into submission Eeva orphaned daughter of a failed revolutionary also battles to find
  • Title: House of Orphans
  • Author: Helen Dunmore
  • ISBN: 9780141015026
  • Page: 367
  • Format: Paperback
House of Orphans Helen Dunmore Finland, 1902, and the Russian Empire enforces a brutal policy to destroy Finland s freedom and force its people into submission Eeva, orphaned daughter of a failed revolutionary, also battles to find her independence and identity Destitute when her father dies, she is sent away to a country orphanage, and then employed as servant to a widowed doctor, Thomas Eklund SlowFinland, 1902, and the Russian Empire enforces a brutal policy to destroy Finland s freedom and force its people into submission Eeva, orphaned daughter of a failed revolutionary, also battles to find her independence and identity Destitute when her father dies, she is sent away to a country orphanage, and then employed as servant to a widowed doctor, Thomas Eklund Slowly, Thomas falls in love with Eeva but she has committed herself long ago to a boy from her childhood, Lauri, who is now caught up in Helsinki s turmoil of resistance to Russian rule.
House of Orphans Helen Dunmore

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    Published :2019-010-17T21:39:01+00:00

One thought on “House of Orphans

  1. Janet

    The book tells the story of Eeva pronounced Ava an orphan, who leaves the orphanage to go to work for the local doctor, Thomas Thomas falls in love with Eeva, but she is in love with her childhood sweetheart Lauri She leaves to go to Helsinki to be with Lauri and make a life for herself there, but when Lauri is arrested by the Okhrana, the Tsarist secret police, and questioned about being a spy, Eeva has to call for the doctor to come to their aid.The book started off really well The first chapt [...]

  2. Amelia

    3.5 StarsI m still trying to find a book to match up to the outstanding The Siege Although decent and on a similar vein, House of Orphans is not that book It touches upon the damage parents do to children coming of age in a time of social unrest the blurred lines between freedom fighting and terrorism and whether terrorism can ever be justified the many paths to becoming a terrorist how our station in life affects our opinions all of which could be very poignant to read in the modern day, given [...]

  3. Adele Cosgrove-Bray

    As always, I enjoyed Helen Dun s wonderfully poetic turns of phrase That she s a poet as well as a novelist is apparent throughout her work.

  4. Rachel Brand

    I will admit it I have a rather unhealthy obsession with Finland So when I spotted this book I was immediately interested I don t remember a lot about this book, depsite having read it little over a year ago I remember that it was a fairly decent book, and quite interesting if you like light historical reads But some parts of this book were light where the main character is working for the doctor in his big house whereas others are quite heavy all of the political stuff in Helsinki The ending se [...]

  5. LindyLouMac

    bookcrossing journal 5Although this book is titled House of Orphans , we actually meet very few orphans, in fact only Eeva, female protagonist of the story, and Anna Lusa, who runs the orphanage The orphanage is just used to set the scene for the story of Eeva because it is to the orphanage that she is sent when her father, a revolutionary and her only family dies When she is older the orphanage places her in service with a widowed doctor who finds himself falling in love with her So he is somew [...]

  6. Lane Ashfeldt

    A lot of the reviews of House of Orphans complain about the sudden switch in style as the book moves from the countryside to the city I guess maybe what Helen Dun was attempting here was to show how the move from rural to urban living also signalled a change in strorytelling style from whatever went before lyrical realism to modernism, and I imagine she was trying to reflect that in the way she wrote this Hence the long detailed chunks of narration that deal with Eevi and the Doctor in the count [...]

  7. SarahC

    This book by a highly recognized author was a disappointment The concept and the setting of the story were fascinating but the story faltered between what could have been a strong historical narrative and a touching personal story The title also the missed the mark It may have been intended to be ideological but I don t think we are given enough to make that connection The book is fairly brief just over 300 pages So much of that writing is oddly descriptive of the vivid details of illness, sex, [...]

  8. Jayne Charles

    The first part of this book hums along at the steady, reassuring pace of a knitting Grandma with enough interest to keep the plot bubbling About halfway, things change and though the reader suspects this earlier phase will have some bearing on the ultimate destiny of the plot, I did find my interest starting to wane from then on Intelligently written, like all her books, this taught me a great deal about Finnish history but left me with the nagging sensation of not having fully understood what t [...]

  9. Sooz

    i really enjoyed both The Siege during the 900 days that Lenningrad was held hostage by the German army during w.w.2 and The Betrayal set during the terror of Stalin s reign unfortunately this one didn t hold up as well i didn t check the date of publication, but House of Orphans definitely feels like an earlier work the story was entertaining enough but it just didn t have the edge that the other two did.

  10. Swiss Reader

    Okay book but not an overwhelming read Interesting topic but falls short of others she has written Wanted from all the characters and better interweaving of the political history into the story instead of just on the edge.

  11. Mary

    Strangely kept slipping away from me even tho tight, accomplished writing Vivid evocation of place Finland period Found country descriptive material plausible than city Eluded me in some way, didn t get under my skin And she is a favourite writer of mine

  12. Leila P

    I enjoyed this novel as well The beginning of the 1900 s is such an interesting era in Finland s history, and Dun seemed to capture it well The only thing I found strange was the way the Finnish people used each other s names while discussing You ve never been to Helsinki, have you, Matti That s a bit un Finnish My favourite character was the doctor Thomas, Eeva remained a mystery to me.The book was very easy to read, and I liked Dun s writing style She is suberb in creating athmosphere and desc [...]

  13. Isabel Dennis

    I was delighted to come across another Helen Dun novel that I hadn t yet read as she is one of my favourite authors This tragic story, set in Finland in 1902, shows how many different types of love there is and how love can be selfless as well as selfish Eeva is vulnerable, yet determined and negotiates a difficult path, at a time when Finnish people where fighting for their lives The trouble with great books like this is that you can t stop reading, but then it comes to an end all too soon.

  14. Gumble's Yard

    Novel set in Finland at the start of the 20th Century, during its Russification The initial pieces in the orphanage and the growing but wary relationship between Thomas and Eeva as both explore their past and feelings is excellent as is the conveyance of a society split between Swedish and Finnish speakers, along class lines and between patriots and the Tsar s forces The characters of Lauri and especially Sasha are unconvincing the book largely loses its way.

  15. Samantha

    This started so well I love Helen Dun s writing and the character of Eeva was very appealing I got drawn into the tale, but somewhere along the line the plot just fizzled out By the last quarter of the book it felt like it had just sacrificed the story for people vocalising analysis of why people become revolutionary I got so impatient with it, I just skim read to the end to find out what happened and it was a complete anticlimax Ultimately disappointing.

  16. Lynda

    Read this as part of my Dun retrospective This is an historical novel set in Finland in a time of latent revolution The main protagonist of the story is Eeva, an educated Finnish girl sent to a rural orphanage following the arrest of her dissident father In the orphanage Eeva comes into contact with the recently widowed local doctor who takes her in as his cleaner and falls deeply in love with herThe novel is beautifully written and full of lyrical description However as the action moves back to [...]

  17. Faye Cobley

    Quite liked this book, but could only give three stars, as felt the ending was cut short Thought the ending left too many loose ends

  18. Margaret

    So well written and researched, a pleasure to read Thoroughly enjoyable Will try to read about Finnish history and Russian domination.

  19. Anne Hetherington

    Very well written book until the last chapter when it fizzled out, it was as though she had had enough.

  20. S Murdoch

    Not my favourite Helen Dun, sadly It was only her irresistible writing that kept me with it she is one of my favourite authors, but I m disappointed with this one.

  21. Alison Evans

    Eeva is the orphaned daughter of a Finnish revolutionary against Russian rule, who has insisted that she is well educated She speaks Finnish, Swedish as the higher class Finns do and Russian When her father dies, she is taken to an orphanage in the countryside, where she is prepared to go into service She is sent to work for the local, widowed doctor, who has one estranged daughter, and he falls in love with her, although he never dares to tell her Eeva s great desire is to get back to Helsinki, [...]

  22. Debbie

    Set in Finland in the early 1900 s and selected from the 2006 orange long list Unfortunately if did not make the shortlist but I was very happy to have read the book which I enjoyed Set against the backdrop of the Finish uprising against Russian domination in 1901 I have not read anything set in Finland before and found this made the book interesting for me A 16 year old Eevie leaves an orphanage to become a maid for a country doctor We see Eevie come to terms with her new life with the doctor [...]

  23. Calzean

    The setting of Finland between 1902 and 1904 with the Finnish under Russian control but soon to declare independence Traditional ties to Sweden are still strong But the story is just strange Eeva s father educates her, he dies, she goes to live with his best friend who is arrested She is then sent to an orphanage for her own protection Two years later, at 16, she is sent to work for a recently widowed doctor who becomes bewitched by her Long passages revolve around his feelings to Eeva, includin [...]

  24. Sandra Lawson

    I love the way that Helen Dun places people against a backdrop of history and explores their lives and reactions House of Orphans is set against the true historical background of the Russification of Finland in the early nineteenth century, and Dun uses a similar plot device although it is Leningrad during and after WW2 for The Siege and The Betrayal In this novel she observes her characters and you come to know them through her descriptions You may not always feel sympathy for every single pers [...]

  25. Basma Fawzy

    The taste of history and politics in House of Orphans drew me in I was excited to learn about revolutionary times and upheavals in Finland The novel was okay but if it wasn 19t for chapter 15, which I believe is extremely well written, I wouldn 19t have marked that book as a favourite The conspirators decided that the life of their oppressor, Bobrikov, must come to an end In spite of everything his belief among them that there must be an end to injustice, Lauri stops to wonder about the nature o [...]

  26. Val

    The orphanage of the title is in Finland in the early twentieth century, when Finland was part of Russia It is the starting point of the story, but also symbolic of the country at that time Tsarist policies attract opposition from both revolutionaries and patriots.The main characters are a doctor, an orphan girl who goes to work for him for a while and the young man she loves Doctor Thomas is a good man who tries to help the disadvantaged people around him, but he is also stuck in his middle cla [...]

  27. David

    As a dedicated reader of Helen Dun novels, I have to say that this was one of her best Her writing just flows off the page no fancy pyrotechnics but great storytelling and superbly drawn characters We gradually get to know Eeva and Thomas and the events that bring them together in the backwoods of Finland in 1902.The book is written entirely, and brilliantly, in the third person, alternating between the main characters Later in Helsinki, the story of Lauri, Sasha and Magda describes the politics [...]

  28. Rai

    It s sort of slow in action, things only start to get interesting two thirds of the way through the book Before then, you ll have to sit through many chapters of a middle aged man lusting after a 16 17 year old girl But once the exciting things start happening, it s not a bad book I like how her life in the House of Orphans had such an impact on how Eeva, one of the main characters, thought and acted I enjoyed the last third of the book, but since things took so long to get good, I m rating it t [...]

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