Sunday Times “Bestsellers of the Year”
Thrilled to be in the top ten bestselling hardback novels of 2020.
Huge thanks to my publisher, Headline,
to my agent, Jonathan Lloyd at Curtis Brown,
and to all booksellers and readers!
See all the Times Bestseller lists here (paywalled)
Britain’s Favourite Novel
Victoria was among the contributors to “Britain’s Favourite Novel” on Sunday December 27th on Channel 5 which explored the nation’s favourite novels as voted for by the public, from Jane Austen to Zadie Smith.
One August Night
“Fans of The Island will love this Fifties-set sequel which follows some characters in the original blockbuster. […] This dramatic, absorbing and good-natured novel abounds with Greek island atmosphere.”
Wendy Holden, Dail Mail
One August Night is a sequel to Victoria Hislop’s 2005 saga The Island and is set in the Cretan town of Plaka and the offshore leper colony of Spinalonga. The title refers to August 25, 1957. As Plaka’s residents celebrate the closure of Spinalonga after the discovery of a cure for leprosy, a gunshot rings out. The murder victim is the wealthy, glamorous young mother Anna Vandoulakis.
This slender, less sprawling, episodic sequel follows the fallout from that event. Fans of its predecessor, bracing themselves for a bleak British lockdown winter, will appreciate a return to Hislop’s thyme-scented, Aegean-lapped fictional Greece.
Patricia Nicol, Sunday Times
“Hislop expertly portrays the warmth of Greece and its people, delving into the long and complicated history of a fascinating country while spinning a family saga that her fans will devour. A beautifully written story that will enchant the reader.”
“…while Hislop doesn’t indulge in unnecessary adjectives, she is hot on the unexpected detail that anchors her characters firmly in time and place and it is the strength of her research which gives her novel such credibility. After his flight from Crete, Manilos ends up in Piraeus where he joins a boatyard crew, and Hislop makes us feel the calluses building on his hands as he blowtorches the paint away from the ship’s hull; there is the wonder that Andros feels when he has the first cocktail of his life, a dry martini at the Grande Bretagne Hotel in Athens. The best scene in the book is where Maria uses her status as a one-time leper to confound a prison guard who has sexually assaulted her. Some of the minor characters, such as the vengeful wife who tries to murder Manilos’s friend, Stavros, spring fully formed off the page like Athena from the head of Zeus. […] It is hard to think of any other anglophone writer who are so culturally fluent that they can write about another country’s history without giving unwitting offence.
Daisy Goodwin, Catholic Herald
Victoria in the Media
Victoria Officially Becomes Honorary Citizen of Greece
Victoria was officially sworn-in as a Greek citizen during a ceremony in Athens on Thursday.
The author in July had been granted the Greek citizenship by Hellenic Republic President Aikaterini Sakellaropoulou for her contribution to the promotion of Greece’s history and traditions through her books. She was officially sworn-in as a Greek citizen at the Interior Ministry by Citizenship Secretary General Athanasios Balerbas. After the ceremony, Victoria Hislop was received at the Maximos Mansion by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis who thanked her for supporting Greece. “I want to thank you for your pure love for Greece, which is reflected in everything you do and write,” Mitsotakis said. He went on to note that the honorary citizenship process is an opportunity to recognize people who are “Greeks at heart”.
On her part, Hislop gave the Prime Minister a copy of her latest book titled “Those who are loved”. She also said that she had been feeling Greek for a long time. “I love Greece with its problems and its difficulties, not only for its beauty. I love everything,” she added. Hislop visits Greece very often and has a second home on the island of Crete. “The Island”, one of her many best-selling novels is set on Spinalonga, an island off the coast of Crete that was Greece’s leper colony for much of the 20th century. The book was adapted by Greece’s Mega Channel as a 26-episode series titled “To Nisi”, which premiered on Greek television in October 2010 and was considered a huge success among viewers and TV critics.
Out now in Paperback: “Those Who Are Loved”
The Sunday Times #1 Bestseller Those Who Are Loved is out in paperback on August 20.
Set against the backdrop of the German occupation of Greece, the subsequent civil war and a military dictatorship, all of which left deep scars.
Themis is part of a family bitterly divided by politics and, as a young woman, her fury with those who have collaborated with the Nazis, drives her to fight for the communists. She is eventually imprisoned on the notorious islands of exile, Makronisos and Trikeri, and has to make a life or death decision. She is proud of having fought, but for the rest of her life is haunted by some of her actions. Forty years after the end of the civil war, she finally achieves catharsis.
‘A beautifully woven love story and a spellbinding, heart-breaking depiction of a country torn apart by hatred’,
‘Hislop has done her research and handles the great sweep of complex Greek history with skill and confidence. She makes a touching family story out of violent and divisive times and her fans will lap this up’,
“I visited a unique Cretan company today, Biorama, which produces spectacularly beautiful and therapeutic products using organic plants and herbs grown on the hillside outside Agios Nikolaos.
In co-operation with archaeologists, they have brought to light rare ingredients used 4,000 years ago and studied ancient methods of preparation. The results are unique and totally organic.”
You can find out more about them here https://www.bioaroma.gr/gb/
A few of my favourite (Greek) Things…