Saturday, August 1, 2015

My share in the conversation...Ross Poldark

I am thrilled to be a part of the Ross Poldark Blog Tour. Watching the series on Masterpiece Theatre has been an enjoyable experience and was great as it coincides with my reading of the books. There is a fabulous giveaway for this tour and the information is at the bottom of this post. There is also a tour schedule so be sure to stop by any of the blog stops that you may have missed. 

Below is my review of the first book of the continuing saga. 

Ross Poldark:  A Novel of Cornwall, 
1783-1787 by Winston Graham

The first novel of The Poldark Saga, Ross Poldark, begins in March 1783 with the death of Joshua Poldark, Ross’s father. In the prologue the reader is given a little history of Joshua and his older brother, Charles Poldark. I liked getting this background information of the two brothers as it did what a prologue should do, set the stage for the story and whet the appetite. I was ready to delve into the meat of the saga.

In Chapter One Ross is returning from America to his beloved home of Nampara in Cornwall after having fought in the war. On the way (Chapter Two) he stops at Trenwith House, the home of his uncle Charles and his cousins, Francis and Verity, where he is very obviously unexpected. Not only did the Trenwith Poldark’s get a shock (they had heard Ross died in the war), Ross received an even bigger shock. His arrival interrupted an engagement dinner! The engagement being celebrated is for none other than Ross’s cousin, Francis, and Elizabeth, the woman that Ross loved and left waiting for him, or so he thought, when he went off to war. Of course, Ross is devastated and the tension in the room is heavy. Verity does her best to help Ross and he does handle himself admirably under the circumstances. Thus begins the story of Ross Poldark.

I fell in love with the character of Ross Poldark. He has his faults and is human, after all, which makes him a perfect hero for the saga. I adored him and I got frustrated with him at times. He has a heart of gold and his desire to help those beneath him in circumstance set him apart from those of his circle in society. It also made him respected by his tenants and miners. Ross cares little for the rules that govern the genteel and has no hesitation in voicing his thoughts. That gets him in trouble sometimes but it is part of what makes him real and endearing.

The story has much about the mines of the area, the people that owned them and those that worked them. It was fascinating and informative. The author has a way with descriptions that puts the reader in the story as the visualizations come to life. The details are not overdone but are enough to bring in the reader and create the experience of feeling what the characters are feeling.

There is much about this novel that I appreciated. When Ross comes home to Nampara and sees the neglect of the land and his home, my heart hurt with him. He has lost the love of his life, his father and now, his home is almost in shambles. The two servants, Jud Paynter and Prudie, who were supposed to be in charge, have spent most of their time in drink and laziness. Although these two characters were rough around the edges and complained much, they were quite comical and a neat addition to the saga. Jud made me laugh on several occasions with his comments and complaints.

The main characters of Ross Poldark: A Novel of Cornwall are written and developed well. The book centers around Ross Poldark and his efforts to reestablish his mine, his home and his place. Along the way he meets a little street urchin, Demelza, and she becomes the central female character. Their tale is one of growth and learning for both. It was not rushed and felt genuine. The next book in the saga is Demelza: A Novel of Cornwall, and I cannot wait to get started on it.

Francis and Elizabeth Poldark have a good bit of page time and their life unfolds in a surprising way. Verity Poldark is one of my favorites and her heart is true. She does not get treated well by her family and is taken for granted but Ross loves her and is good to her. Their close relationship was a saving grace for both of them.

The author, Winston Graham, is an excellent author. Not only does he have a good plot, the story flows and held my attention. I loved and lived with the characters and am ready to visit them again. I highly recommend Ross Poldark.

FYI: For any of you that may be watching the series on Masterpiece Theatre, it follows closely to the narrative. There are a few additions and changes but a good bit of the conversation is taken straight from the book. The beginning of the series was different, however most of what is seen was gleaned or assumed from conversations later in the novel.

I was given a copy of the book by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.


In the first novel in Winston Graham’s hit series, a weary Ross Poldark returns to England from war, looking forward to a joyful homecoming with his beloved Elizabeth. But instead he discovers his father has died, his home is overrun by livestock and drunken servants, and Elizabeth—believing Ross to be dead—is now engaged to his cousin. Ross has no choice but to start his life anew.
Thus begins the Poldark series, a heartwarming, gripping saga set in the windswept landscape of Cornwall. With an unforgettable cast of characters that spans loves, lives, and generations, this extraordinary masterwork from Winston Graham is a story you will never forget.


In the enchanting second novel in Winston Graham’s beloved Poldark series, Demelza Carne, an impoverished miner’s daughter Ross Poldark rescued from a fairground brawl, now happily finds herself his wife. But the events of these turbulent years test their marriage and their love. As Ross launches into a bitter struggle for the right of the mining communities, Demelza’s efforts to adapt to the ways of the gentry (and her husband) place her in increasingly odd and embarrassing situations. When tragedy strikes and sows the seeds of an enduring rivalry between Ross and the powerful George Warleggan, will Demelza manage to bridge their differences before they destroy her and her husband’s chance at happiness?

Against the stunning backdrop of eighteenth century Cornwall, Demelza sweeps readers into one of the greatest love stories of all time.


Winston Graham (1908-2003) is the author of forty novels. His books have been widely translated and the Poldark series has been developed into two television series, shown in 22 countries. Six of Winston Graham's books have been filmed for the big screen, the most notable being Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Winston Graham is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and in 1983 was awarded the O.B.E.


If Jane Austen met Charlotte Bronte and they drank too much port, the Poldark Saga would be their literary love child.” —  

Captain Ross Poldark rides again in the new Sourcebooks Landmark tie-in editions of Ross Poldark and Demelza, the first two novels in the acclaimed Poldark Saga by Winston Graham, adapted into the inaugural season of the new Masterpiece Classic PBS’s series Poldark, airing June 21 – August 2 on PBS.

In celebration, July 6th through August 3rd, The Ross Poldark Blog Tour will visit thirty popular book blogs specializing in historical, romance and Austenesque fiction. Featuring spotlights, previews, excerpts and book reviews of these two acclaimed historical fiction novels, the tour will also offer readers a chance at a fabulous giveaway contest including copies of the books and a stunning Anglophile-themed prize package.


July 06           My Jane Austen Book Club (Preview)
July 07           Booktalk & More (Excerpt)                                   
July 08           Reading, Writing, Working, Playing (Review)
July 09           vvb32 Reads (Preview)
July 10           The Paige Turner (Review)                                 
July 10           My Kids Led Me Back To P & P (Excerpt)                                
July 11           Austenprose (Review)                                          
July 12           Laura's Reviews (Preview)                                                          
July 13           Peeking Between the Pages (Review)                         
July 13           Reflections of a Book Addict (Preview)                                              
July 14           Living Read Girl (Review)                        
July 15           Confessions of a Book Addict (Review)
July 16           vvb32 Reads (Review)                 
July 17           Paige Turner (Review)                             
July 18           Truth, Beauty, Freedom & Books (Preview)                           
July 19           Marie Antoinette’s Gossip Guide (Excerpt)                             
July 20           Laura's Reviews (Review)                                   
July 20           The Calico Critic (Review)                                               
July 21           So Little Time…So Much to Read (Excerpt)
July 21           Poof Books (Excerpt)                                            
July 22           Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)
July 23           Austenprose (Review)                                          
July 24           Peeking Between the Pages (Review) 
July 25           My Love for Jane Austen (Excerpt)
July 25           Living Read Girl (Review)
July 26           Delighted Reader (Review)
July 27           My Jane Austen Book Club (Review)
July 27           Austenesque Reviews (Review)
July 27           Laura's Reviews (Review)
July 28           She Is Too Fond Of Books (Review)
July 29           English Historical Fiction Authors (Preview)                         
July 30           vvb32 Reads (Review)
July 30           Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)
July 31           CozyNookBks (Excerpt)                                       
Aug 01           The Calico Critic (Review)
Aug 01           More Agreeably Engaged (Review)
Aug 02           Scuffed Slippers Wormy Books (Review)
Aug 03           Romantic Historical Reviews (Review)
Aug 03           Psychotic State Book Reviews (Review)   


·         Sourcebooks website:

·         The Buzz at Sourcebooks Blog:

·         Sourcebooks on Facebook:

·         Sourcebooks Landmark on Twitter:

·         Twitter hashtags: #PoldarkBlogTour, #Sourcebooks, #PoldarkPBS, #HistoricalFicton, #PoldarkBooks, #Giveaway, #Reading.   


Grand Giveaway Contest

Win One of Three Fabulous Prizes

In celebration of the re-release of Ross Poldark and Demelza, Sourcebooks Landmark is offering three chances to win copies of the books or a grand prize, an Anglophile-themed gift package.

Two lucky winners will each receive one trade paperback copy of Ross Poldark and Demelza, and one grand prize winner will receive a prize package containing the following items:

(2 ) Old Britain Castles Pink Pottery Mugs by Johnson Brothers
(1) Twelve-inch Old Britain Castles Pink Pottery Plater by Johnson Brothers
(1) London Telephone Box Tin of Ahmad English Breakfast Tea
(1) Jar of Mrs. Bridges Marmalade
(1) Package of Duchy Originals Organic Oaten Biscuits
(2) Packets of Blue Boy Cornflower Seeds by Renee's Garden Heirloom (1) Trade Paperback Copy of Ross Poldark & Demelza, by Winston Graham

To enter the giveaway contest simply leave a comment on any or all of the blog stops on the Ross Poldark Blog Tour starting July 06, 2015 through 11:59 pm PT, August 10, 2015. Winners will be drawn at random from all of the entrants and announced on the Buzz at Sourcebooks blog on August 13, 2015. Winners have until August 20, 2015 to claim their prize. The giveaway contest is open to US residents and the prizes will be shipped to US addresses. Good luck to all!


  1. Great review, excited the next season will expand to ten episodes!

  2. Great review! I love the TV series and I need to read the series. Ross is an interesting character. ;)

  3. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!! I'm so glad to have discovered these stories... the new Masterpiece show has sucked me in and I'm excited to look into the books as well!

  4. love the review the story of ross and demelza is so great i love the show watch every weekend

  5. Enjoyed reading your review and love the new Masterpiece show. Aidan Turner and Eleanor Tomlinson are doing a wonderful job of portraying Ross and Demelza.

  6. Thank you for the excellent review. I saw the original series and am watching the current one. After reading your review, I think that I shall read the books now. I was glad to hear that the new Masterpiece production follows the books so it will be fun to visualize while I read. The giveaways are fabulous!

  7. I wondered just how closely the books follow the TV series -- was kind of hoping we'd get more backstory about what happened to Ross during the war that kept him away for so long. This is probably the wrong time to ask about that. Hopefully, I"ll find out for myself. :) Verity is a lovely character, I agree. I like her relationship with Ross and (in the TV show, at least) how helpful she's been to Demelza.

  8. Loved the review and would love to be in the drawing! Thanks for sharing.

  9. I'm so glad to hear that the TV series is sticking closely to the novels as I have been enjoying the show a lot and would love to read the books next!

  10. I'm so glad to hear that Verity and Ross continue to love each other and become each other's shoulders to lean on. I haven't read the books, but the two episodes of the new series I watched made me really like their relationship. I hope to find out good things happen for Verity. She deserves it from what I've seen so far. Great review! Glad I found your blog on the tour. :)

  11. I am looking forward to watching the series (missed the first episode while camping and wouldn't start in the middle) and reading the books. Enjoyed the review and am looking forward to seeing the relationship grow between Ross and Demelza.

  12. Nice review, Janet! I liked Ross and liked what you said about feeling so close to the story.

  13. Very nice review. I have been trying to read all of the reviews on the blog tour and haven't read a bad review yet. I haven’t read the Demelza or Poldark novels yet but have been enjoying the series on PBS. Thank you for participating in the blog tour.

  14. Thanks for your review. Love this series & love Aidan Turner as Ross Poldark. Thanks for the giveaway chance.
    Carol L

  15. Thanks for your review. Love this series & love Aidan Turner as Ross Poldark. Thanks for the giveaway chance.
    Carol L

  16. The Masterpiece series has been great, hate to see it end. Ross was so compassionate, his love for Demelza and Julia was so honest. I have really enjoyed visiting the blogs on this tour and reading the reviews. Thank you for the chance to win the giveaway.

  17. Splendid review! I have enjoyed the POLDARK series! The blog tour has been fabulous. I can't wait to read the books.

  18. Loved your review! I've almost finished the book and absolutely loved the MP series. Now, I'd like to see you draw Ross Poldark - bet it would be downright yummy!

  19. Loving this series and would love to read the books as well. Thank you for hosting in the giveaway!

  20. I loved the show and I want to read the books!

  21. I (ashamed to admit this) did not watch the original series even though I was sitting right there in England when it aired. But this new one has been one of the highlights of the summer! Just love the characters Ross and Demelza and have nothing but disdain for Elizabeth and George Warleggan!
    Great review, Janet; very clear and helpful to any who might be getting ready to watch online if they've missed this as it aired.

  22. Thanks for posting this great giveaway chance! I love the show and would love to read the books too!

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  24. I was so sorry to see season 1 end ... it was such a perfect summer series. I can't wait to read the books - and watch season 2 on PBS!

  25. my daughter & I love Sunday nights watching PBS, this show is amazing and we look forward to next season-it can't come soon enough!

  26. Love watching the Poldark series. I would love to read the books too. Thank you. Maureen