Set in the 1960s, Dying Phoenix is a love story based around the tumultuous years of a military coup in Greece. Max and Nina Hammett are destined to struggle in dangerous times and in a setting of fear and secrets. A terrible misunderstanding sees them separated, and as Nina takes risks to get a good journalistic story-telling of the truth behind the government activities, Max finds himself battling against time to rescue her from danger. Stories of torture and death abound, and in this story, desperate times call for desperate measures!
Thrilling and factual, the characters in this story are colourful and in some cases based on real people. Through descriptive text it is almost possible to see and smell the beautiful surroundings of Greece, and imagine the delicious foods on offer. The passionate nature of the Greek people is beautifully observed, and the reader is left in no doubt of the emotional turmoil of the characters. Even the most minor players are well represented and believable and can be easily related to. The love and dedication of Max towards his wife, and his fearless journey across Greece to rescue her, is filled with a passion we would all perhaps like a little of in our lives. The turbulent troubles experienced by Greece and described in this book could relate to many countries today and is a timeless message.
Loretta Proctor clearly knows and understands Greece and the Greek people. Personally, I found this book a bit of a slow starter, but was glad I stuck with it, as it blossomed into a most engaging and memorable read.