‘The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles’ by Katherine Pancol set to sail in to sweet success in America, 5/5 stars

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles by Katherine Pancol

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles
by Katherine Pancol

English-speaking readers finally have an opportunity to become acquainted with highly acclaimed French author, Katherine Pancol. According to the author’s website, “The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles” has already sold two million copies and has been published in 30 countries. Finally, it’s ‘our’ turn.

“The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles” opens with Josephine’s life on the verge of collapse. Her unemployed husband considers himself too noble to accept menial tasks even though the bills need to be paid and food put on the table. Her work as a historical scholar barely makes ends meet. They have two children. Their teenage daughter, Hortense, takes cues from Josephine’s high profile sister, Iris. Hortense is on the fast track for high society living. She walks, talks and acts the part. Her younger sister, Zoe, lives quietly in the shadow of her older sister. Reality slaps Jo in the face when her husband runs off to Kenya to farm crocodiles with the mistress Jo didn’t even know he had. Charismatic Iris, always seeking the spotlight, wins a lucrative book contract after spinning historical tales to a publisher based on conversations with Jo. All she has to do next is convince Jo to ghost write the historical romance on her behalf. Jo gets the money while Iris gets the publicity. That’s the plan. When the book starts flying of the shelves, tension between the sisters escalates. Do you hold fast to a secret you swore to keep or rise up and claim the credit you rightfully deserve?

“The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles” is a tale of two sisters, Josephine and Iris, opposites in every way yet each longing for the strengths found in the other sister. A complementary storyline follows Hortense and Zoe as they depict many of the same realities but on a much younger playing field. In “The Yellow Eyes”, Pancol weaves her many characters in and out of tensions due to economic disparity, secrets, lies and betrayal. An assortment of romances among both primary and secondary characters adds interest and keeps the pace of the story at a fast clip. The characters are well rounded and believable. Zoe’s occasional outbursts of frustration keep her character real. Pancol’s use of language is clever and tickles my brain, describing common feelings in the most interesting ways. I like the way she relays the many unusual ways we demonstrate love for each other through the different relationships. Pancol’s “The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles” provides readers with a can’t-put-down tale that you definitely will not want to miss.

Disclosure: A complimentary copy of this book was given to me by Penguin Books in exchange for an honest review.

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