The Ash Museum by Rebecca Smith

I’m delighted to be a part of The Ash Museum Book Tour!

About The Ash Museum

Through ten decades and across three continents, The Ash Museum is an intergenerational story of loss, migration and the search for somewhere to feel at home.

1944. The Battle of Kohima. James Ash dies leaving behind two families: his ‘wife’ Josmi and two children, Jay and Molly, and his parents and sister in England who know nothing about his Indian family.

2012. Emmie is raising her own daughter, Jasmine, in a world she wants to be very different from the racist England of her childhood. Her father, Jay, doesn’t even have a photograph of the mother he lost and still refuses to discuss his life in India. Emmie finds comfort in the local museum – a treasure trove of another family’s stories and artefacts.

Little does Emmie know that with each generation, her own story holds secrets and fascinations that she could only dream of.

My Thoughts

I was delighted to review The Ash Museum as part of this publisher book tour. Smith has penned an enthralling and elegantly written tale of intergenerational loss. The novel follows the current fashion for disjointed non-linear narratives, novels that make the reader work that little bit harder to follow the story. It takes skill to pull off this technique. Rebecca Smith has that skill.

While it may not have been the intention of the author to compose a YA novel, that is how it came across to me. Somehow, as I was reading I could picture myself in my old high school classroom, discussing the various interwoven threads of the tale. I wrote a detailed review for Trip Fiction. Here’s a taste:

Beautifully conceived and plainly told in a soft and gentle style, The Ash Museum tells the story of nine-year-old Emmie’s quest to discover what happened to her father and his birth parents in India. The opening chapters are set in the 1970s somewhere in Sussex, and depict the casual prejudices and embarrassing ignorance of the times with gentle irony as young Emmie’s father Jay Ash is roped into helping organise the local fête.

Visit the Trip Fiction website to read my full review. (link in the quote above) With warm thanks to Legend Press for the opportunity to be a part of this tour.

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