My Review:

The Moon in the Mango Tree is a beautifully written story about a woman’s pursuit of her own identity while remaining dedicated to her marriage and the man she loves. Set against the backdrop of Siam and later Europe, the narrative chronicles Barbara’s life as the wife of a missionary doctor in the remote jungle area of Nan and then the bright social life of Bangkok. Her growing discontent with her growing sense of inadequacy sends her on a quest to find her dream of a music career.

Ms. Ewen masterfully crafts this tale with descriptive prose about the people, the countryside, and the customs of Siam as well as Barbara’s inner thoughts and emotions. I found myself caring about Barbara and Harvey and was anxious to learn what choices Barbara would make.

I would recommend The Moon in the Mango Tree, especially to those who love historical fiction.

About the Book:

The Moon in the Mango Tree by Pamela Binnings EwenBased upon a true story. Barbara Bond is beautiful, talented, smart, and she’s trained for years to sing grand opera. But for the average woman in 1919 the idea of a career outside the home was a leap into the unknown. She marries Harvey Perkins, a medical missionary, sets aside her career for the moment-she believes-and travels with him into the jungles of Siam. There she struggles with her faith and the mission, all the while becoming enchanted with the local people and their culture. Soon her love for Harvey is tested by a secret that rises between them. After several years they move to Bangkok, where Harvey is a royal physician. Life glitters here, but still she longs to sing. Can she have it all-Harvey and a career? It’s the roaring twenties: Bangkok, Paris, Lausanne, and finally Rome. Here, alone in the shadow of Harvey’s secret, Barbara faces the harsh choice between music and love.

But when you choose between two things you love, one is lost.

Based on a true story.

“You will feel the oppressive heat of the jungle, the furious love between a man and a woman, and the feelings of loneliness from living with a man who is bound by duty to give his all to his patients while having little left to give at home. Placed in a time of fun, loud parties, and impressive party guests, The Moon in the Mango Tree makes you feel like you have stepped back in time, and right into the action.”

(Kathy Fisher) The Romance Readers Connection.

About the Author:

pamelaewen.jpgUntil recently retiring to write full time, Pamela Binnings Ewen was a partner in the Houston office of the international law firm of BakerBotts, L.L.P., specializing in corporate finance. She now lives just outside New Orleans in Mandeville, Louisiana with her husband, James Lott. She has served on the Board of Directors of Inprint, Inc., a non-profit organization supporting the literary arts in Houston, and is on the Board of Directors of The Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society in New Orleans.

Pamela’s first novel, Walk Back The Cat (Broadman & Holman. May, 2006) is the story of an embittered and powerful clergyman who learns an ancient secret, confronting him with truth and a choice that may destroy him. She is also the best-selling author of the acclaimed non-fiction book Faith On Trial, published by Broadman & Holman in 1999, currently in its third printing. Although it was written for non-lawyers, Faith On Trial was also chosen as a text for a course on law and religion at Yale Law School in the Spring of 2000, along with The Case For Christ by Lee Stroble. Continuing the apologetics begun in Faith On Trial, Pamela also appears with Gary Habermas, Josh McDowell, Darrell Bock, Lee Stroble, and others in the film Jesus: Fact or Fiction, a Campus Crusade for Christ production. Her new novel, The Moon In The Mango Tree (B&H Publishing Group, May 2008) will be available next spring. Set in the 1920’s and based on a true story, it is about a woman faced with making a choice between career and love, and her search for faith over the glittering decade.

Pamela is the latest writer to emerge from a Louisiana family recognized for its statistically improbable number of successful authors. A cousin, James Lee Burke, who won the Edgar Award, wrote about the common ancestral grandfathers in his Civil War novel White Dove At Morning. Among other writers in the family are Andre Dubus (Best Picture Oscar nomination for The Bedroom; his son, Andre Dubus III, author of The House of Sand and Fog, Best Picture Oscar nomination and an Oprah pick; Elizabeth Nell Dubus (the Cajun trilogy); and Alafair Burke, just starting out with the well received Samantha Kincaid mystery series. Pamela is currently working on a new book titled Dancing on Glass, which was recently short-listed as a finalist for the 2007 Faulkner/Wisdom creative writing novel award.