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Syersken fra Madrid
María Dueñas
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Syersken fra Madrid

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  8,835 ratings  ·  1,509 reviews
The Time In Between is a word-of-mouth phenomenon that catapulted María Dueñas, a debut author, to the top of Spain's bestseller lists and has been sold in twenty-five countries.

This breathtaking novel, which combines the storytelling power of The Shadow of the Wind with the irresistible romance of Casablanca, moves at an unstoppable pace. After her lover lures her away fr...more
659 pages
Published 2012 (first published 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Book Him Danno
I am going to be honest. I said I would read this book because I think I need to read more women authors and more foreign writers, just to get out of my comfort zone. But when I finally got the book in my hands and read the synopsis I was scared because it was hitting a lot of things I tend to avoid. What will I have in common with a pre WWII seamstress as she deals with love and intrigue in Southern Europe. A dressmaker for goodness sake! But being the dutiful guy that I am I took it to work wi...more
Sep 14, 2012 Elizabeth rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of The Far Pavilions, Perfume, The Book Theif
Wow. I devoured this book. It pretty much hit all the right notes for me: exotic places, a little romance (but not too much), spies, MI6, deception, and fashion. I always seem to resonate with the international bestsellers. The Far Pavillions is a favorite, as is Perfume. Anyway, I recommend this book highly. With two full time jobs, a child, and a novel that I'm revising, the fact that I finished it in three days should sufficiently recommend it.
I love a good historical novel. This one has elements I am familiar with; Germans and Nazis, mixed with elements I knew little about - the Spanish Civil War, the leadership bought by the Nazis and how the Allies dealt with attempts to keep Spain out of WWII.

There are four parts to the book but all are told by Sira's perspective. Sira is a humble seamstress in Madrid, helping in the shop where her mother works. She learns skills, is promoted, meets a nice boy, gets engaged then runs off with anot...more
Being an English Major I am very critical of literature. I will pick a book a part(because I can). I began reading this because it was ent to me to review. I wasn't looking forward to it at all. I was actually dreading it. So I began reading it with a terrible attitude & knew I was going to be critical(probably unjustly) in my review.
I began the book while waiting for a doctor's appointment with a doctor who is routinely at least 1 hour behind schedule. I had to keep rereading the beginning...more
Tea Jovanović
Ko voli špansku književnost i odlično napisan roman ovu knjigu nikako ne treba da propusti... Bila je veliki hit u Španiji i svuda u svetu osim u Srbiji... Prevod je dobar, knjiga se guta u dahu... posebna poslastica za sve koji uživaju u debeljuškastim knjigama...
I will have a full review on FBC in early November and I will c/p it here so for now several quick points:

- the book is indeed a page turner and you never really know when time passes reading it; I was shocked to see it ending and I could have read another 600 pages easily - the ending is good and satisfying but the book could have gone on for a while more for sure

- a first narration and the voice starts a bit slow - one thing I cannot abide is silly narrators and for the first 70-80 pages Sira...more
So, I actually got 400 pages into this one before deciding to put it down for good. Why didn't I finish?

The book is 600 pages long, and the action part of the book (spying ) doesn't get started for 350 pages. The first half of the book is all character development and set-up. Unfortunately, 400 pages into the book, I really don't have a good idea who our heroine is. She says she's uneducated, yet is some sort of social chameleon who gets by on faking her way through everything. And you know, tha...more
As it takes place during the Spanish Civil War (albeit seen from the distance of North Africa)and World War II, I was very interested in the setting of the book, as I don't know much about what was going on in Spain during this period. The premise is very promising: a young, poor Spanish seamstress is ruined by love and has to create herself anew as a seamstress to the high society of Tunisia. I was interested during the first two parts of the book, especially as world events start to creep into...more
Maggie Bramley
Lost in translation? Not a bit of it.

I often find that books written in another language are never quite the same when translated and when I first began to read this book, it seemed a little flat, even though the story was moving on quite quickly. However, after a very short time, things really started to pick up and from then on, I couldn't put it down.

Set in the time of the Spanish Civil War and the run up to World War II, the book is set partly in Spain and then in Morocco and follows the for...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Read by Zilah Mendoza
Length 21.8 hrs

This is the story of a young seamstress and her mother during the Spanish Civil War. After being engaged with a government clerk, Sira falls in love with a salesman and decides to fly with him to Morocco.

In the meantime, she met the father she never knew.

By returning to Spain, she then becomes an undercover agent for the Allies during World War II.

This is a story with a first-person narrator which makes the narrative quite long and too boring in...more
Annie Modesitt
It wasn't that the book was bad, it was an interesting story. But the author teased out elements of the story in such an unsatisfactory way that it was painful. Then, breathlessly, she'd practically leap over the pertinent piece of information in a coy manner;

"I looked through the peep hole, and saw the person I expected to see. I let them in [blah, blah, blah]"

And then just before the end of the chapter she'd FINALLY toss in who'd been at the door. Just odd.

The whole book had this...more
This is a poignant book featuring a child raised in a dressmaker's shop until the Spanish Civil War causes then shop to close. Engaged to one man, Sira leaves him for another only to be betrayed and left penniless in Morocco. In her efforts to excavate her mother from Madrid, she meets Marcus Logan but is too afraid to trust him and as more and more Germans pour into Spain, she finds herself recruited into espionage for the west keeping her ears out for information from her customers to pass to...more
He leído este libro por recomendación de una amiga y también por la de los miles de lectores mencionados en la solapa, pero yo personalmente no sé si lo recomendaría.
No comprendo por qué este libro no me ha gustado más. Tiene todos los ingredientes de la clase de literatura que más me ha gustado siempre: la época de la guerra civil española y la posguerra, las historias de mujeres, la conexión entre el mundo hispano y el anglosajón... Tal vez me encuentro simplemente en una etapa diferente de mi...more
This book was written in the first person but there was one section where it reverted to third person as the character who was writing the story could not have known what was happening in that section as it was occurring in another country. Then, at the end of the chapter the narrator said that they had discovered the information through letters that had arrived from another character. What sort of advice was this writer receiving from her editor? Obviously not good advice as I could see a way o...more
The Time In Between is a comprehensively challenging fictional debut; over 600 pages of minutely researched Spanish history is skillfully woven into a page-turning tome that totally tugs the reader into the fascinating life of a remarkable young woman whose determination, strength, and demeanor irrevocably changes her destiny.

The consequential trials endured during and after Spain’s Civil War, leaves a country politically and ideologically divided, its citizens cautious not only of what the new...more
I had to reluctantly let this book go after reading about 120 pages. There were several aspects that I could not overcome in order to keep ploughing through its 600 plus pages. Perhaps it's me, perhaps I am suffering from reader fatigue and have lost my patience with books that do not get to their point, especially in an age when publishers expect (nay, demand) that the novel's trajectory be clear by the end of the first chapter.

I picked up this book as I was interested in learning about Morocco...more
The first few pages of this book really grabbed me, especially these first couple of sentences: A typewriter shattered my destiny. The culprit was a Hispano-Olivetti, and for weeks, a store window kept it from me. The story seemed like it was going to be interesting, and I liked the writing. Then the protagonist, Sira, turned into a simpering victim who made a bad decision and then let others continue making bad decisions for her. I'm happy that she changed as the story went along. The story ti...more
This novel truly captures the atmosphere of the 1930's and 1940's. The main character, Sira, is young, capricious, and eager to find her future. Her mother, a dressmaker, teachers her to grow up like her. Sira's story would have ended when she became a dressmaker and lived out her days much like her mother if not for a chance encounter with a handsome man. Their connection is immediate and soon Sira is taking risks for him.

Ramiro, Sira's lover, takes her to North Africa; he promptly abandons he...more
Boring and predictable, filled with every possible cliché. Since it was kind of hard to put all of them in one single "normal" book, Dueñas piles them up by turning a mini series (each devoted to one or to clichés) into a single book.

I disagree with whoever said it´s a tale about a self-made woman, sort of an ode to the independent, strong female persona, too. The lady in question is dragged through the story by the hands of others. A couple of them are women, but they´re there only to introduce...more
O tempo entre costuras

A sinopse, logo despertou a minha curiosidade: 2ª Guerra Mundial, espionagem… Portugal pelo meio… todos os ingredientes certos para prender a minha atenção! Não conhecia a autora, mas como nos últimos tempos tenho descoberto alguns autores espanhóis que têm sido uma agradável surpresa, arrisquei. E não me enganei, este livro não foi excepção. Mais uma obra da literatura espanhola que me agradou, mais uma autora espanhola que vou seguramente continuar a seguir. Um livro muit...more
Denise Duncan
Normalmente no soy muy fan de las novelas históricas, entre otras cosas porque confían demasiado en el interés que el lector ya tiene en ese período histórico/personaje. Reconozco que en muchos casos eso que me aleja es mi propia ignorancia, si me supiera la historia en ciernes de pé a pá, disfrutaría de los detalles adicionales. Pero resulta que soy una lectora que se niega a leer partiendo de su propia información. O sea... una novela es una novela y un libro de historia es otra cosa.

Esta, en...more
Arantxa Baños
Comencé el libro con dudas, ya que ni el título ni el resumen me llamaron especialmente la atención, pero las buenas críticas pudieron con mi curiosidad.
Me enganchó desde el principio, las historias de amor siempre lo consiguen. Sin embargo, me pareció que poco a poco se iba haciendo muy lento, y cada vez más necesitaba que pasase algo realmente importante. Esta sensación se invirtió al final cuando me pareció que iba todo realmente rápido.
A pesar de ese ritmo poco equilibrado, me gustó. La tra...more
Ho fatto fatica a staccarmi da questo libro e dalla sua protagonista, l’avrei portata sempre con me, tra le mie cose da fare, tra i miei giorni da riempire… per darmi coraggio, per farmi dire “guarda come ero, guarda a cosa ero destinata io, e guarda cosa sono diventata, guarda dove la vita mi ha trascinata”… un’eroina che sa di “Via col vento”, sa di Liala, sa di romanzo d’appendice d’altri tempi, di quelli che ormai consideriamo banali perché esageratamente finti e romantici, costruiti apposta...more
Miss GP
I'm very puzzled by the wonderful reviews of this book. Most of it was very slow (it did pick up over the past 150 pages or so). The plot is nonsensical; the heroine's "spying" seemed pointless, reliant on coincidence, and not carried out in a rational fashion. I didn't care about the heroine's predicaments or about her as a character. I found the plot incredibly predictable and not in the least romantic. And, the heroine was constantly bumping into people she knew, as if there were only half a...more
Bria Polacek
I picked up this novel, impressed by the reviews it had gotten and how the author was from Spain. It immediately looked like it had promise, BUT I felt the whole seamstress angle could get old fast because how could a seamstress really get to involved in a war or how could the author make that job to interesting!?
I wasn't excited to start reading about how her hands hurt, how she sat in one place all day long as important events just went right by her....... So many books use that angle and the...more
Licinia Cardoso
De leitura fácil e atraente. A escritora leva-nos através de 5 anos pela vida surpreendente da personagem central, que se movimentou como agente secreta entre alemães, ingleses, espanhóis e até portugueses.
Gostei de todos os ambientes, em que a estória se desenrola e das outras personagens também. Tem descrições que nos fazem sentir no local, sem serem maçudas nem desnecessárias.
Esta vai ser outra escritora em vou estar atenta a futuras obras suas.
I would definitely recommend this book as it caught me from the first page to the last and I didn't want it to end.
This novel is about a young seamstress who, suddenly, sees herself in a situation pretty far from everything she has always expected her future would be. It has a little bit of everything: Spanish history, espionage, love, exotic places...
I give it five stars!
The is a novel that needed a lot of editing - it was so slow and so boring in places. I am giving nothing away in noting that it's about a women who becomes a spy in Madrid during WW2. One can easily get this info from the book flap. This book is 609 pages long and she doesn't become a spy until after page 400! And even then, until the last mission described in the book - her spy activities are tedious and there is no sense of danger or excitement - which I suspect is really normal for most spy...more
Pedro Sarmento
Sira QUiroga, representa certamente muitas das mulheres e dos homens que durante a guerra Nazi, durante o tempo da opressão Franquista, ( tal com no Portugal de Salazar ) deram o corpo e a vida á luta, acreditando que o caminho era estar de aviso, conhecer e dar a conhecer os meios que o "inimigo" da Suástica desenvolvia com o intuito de se tornarem donos da Europa.

A história está na minha opinião muito bem "alinhavada" a costureira Sira Quiroga, passa por momentos dificeis que do ponto de vista...more
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THE SEAMSTRESS 43 108 Jul 13, 2014 05:39PM  
  • Dime quién soy
  • La reina descalza
  • La bibliotecaria de Auschwitz
  • El tango de la Guardia Vieja
  • Inés y la alegría
  • The Sisters
  • El imperio eres tú
  • Mozart's Last Aria
  • Te daré la tierra
  • Jasmine Nights
  • Villa Triste
  • The Sandalwood Tree
  • The Emperor of Lies
  • The White Pearl
  • Tierra firme (Martín Ojo de Plata, #1)
  • The Fever Tree
  • The Traitor's Emblem
  • One Hundred and One Nights
María Dueñas es Doctora en Filología Inglesa y profesora titular de la Universidad de Murcia. Nacida en Puertollano (Ciudad Real) en 1964; casada, dos hijos, siete hermanos, un puñado grande de buenos amigos. Reside en Cartagena.
More about María Dueñas...
The Heart Has Its Reasons the seamstress Atria Español: Selección de novelas bestsellers: Muestra gratis The Heart Has It's Reasons El Gran Libro de los Tests

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“My fear didn't want to be left behind, so it came with me.” 12 likes
“And yet for that, blood is thicker than water, even if the only thing you've shared with your people have been hardships and miseries.” 6 likes
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