Devil On Her Tongue ~ Linda Holeman

A spellbinding story of loss, romance and betrayal in eighteenth century Portugal, from the bestselling historical fiction author Linda Holeman.

devilonhertongueDiamantina is just thirteen when her father, a Dutch sailor who washed up on the Portuguese island of  Porto Santo in the Madeira archipelago, abandons her to search for diamonds in the New World.  Soon her mother, an African born witch and healer, sickens and dies, leaving her daughter to fend for herself in their hut on the beach.  Unbaptized, tainted by her mother’s witchcraft and her foreign blood, the girl seems doomed in her struggle to survive.  For a time Diamantina’s safety seems to rest with Abilio, who shares her dream of getting away from the island.  But Abilio is a man without compunction and he uses her as he likes.  If Diamantina had been a respectable girl, he would have ruined her.

There is witchery and healing in this novel, many bottles of wine tasted and drunk, diamond mining and colonial depredations in Brazil, venal priests, betraying husbands and bastard children, the massive earthquake that came close to destroying Lisbon, and finally a love story.  In Linda Holeman’s deft hands, Diamantina’s odyssey is at heart the story of a woman learning to live with the choices she has made, whether they bring her joy or tragedy.

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