BOOK CLUB: Cry of the Firebird

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By T.M. Clark
ISBN: 9781489260925
Copy courtesy of Harper Collins

Dr Lily Winters, Research Consultant with the World Health Organisation and her musician husband Quintin find their comfortable lives in Queensland, Australia uprooted. The WHO need them in South Africa, immediately.


Dr Winters has been called in to replace a former colleague Dr Ian Hawthorne to investigate and treat the increasing number of thinnings disease (HIV) patients, and to find an explanation for the apparent clusters of patients with HIV and meningitis. Why are there clusters, how are their cases related and how can they be successfully treated and the spread of this disease contained?

Dr Hawthorn was murdered. Noone knows exactly why, although suspicion abounds as he had been cultivating traditional medicine plants from the region and making medicinal oils for his patients. This is an illegal practice but one he is willing to be a part of for the welfare of his patients. Dr Hawthorne has also been collaborating with a Kalahari medicine man and policeman to write a book about traditional medicines to ensure their knowledge is saved for future generations.

So why was he murdered? Dr Hawthorn was not a likable man and could be callous and abrasive towards others, but his intentions were to help his community survive and to record all that he had learned about traditional medicines.

Lily and Quinton find themselves in a very uncomfortable situation. They have lived and worked in Africa years before, but this is different. They are living in Dr Hawthorne’s house with his loyal and trusted staff and are surrounded by a comprehensive security detail. However it isn’t long before Lily is the target of a vicious attack and it is made clear that whatever secrets resulted in Dr Hawthorne’s death, they are now threatening Lily and Quentin.

This is the first novel by T.M. Clark that I have had the privilege to read. I found this to be a great page turner, with a fast paced story-line and many twists and turns. It is clear that the author has done extensive research on the setting, characters and languages and this all helps the reader to imagine the characters.

I commend TM Clark for this novel and am very grateful to Harlequin Mira and Beauty & Lace Book Club for the opportunity to write this review; thank you.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading Cry of the Firebird. You can read their comments below, or contribute to the discussion by leaving your own feedback.

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