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This book is about the impossible to anticipate repercussions of a one off event that happens to Charlotte at the start of the book. I liked the idea and so downloaded the book, but I found the characters both unlikeable and unrealistic. The style of writing was jarring as it moved from one story to the next, an effect emphasised by the narrator with a lot of pauses and some truly dreadful accents. I have since wondered if I would have enjoyed the book a lot more if I had actually read it rather than listened to it being read, I think chances are I would have.
If you like a book that fleetingly touches on a number of concurrent tales then this may well be a book for you. If you prefer singular, more detailed accounts then this might not be your cup of tea. That said, it is a very easy listen (awful accents aside) so would probably also suit as a beach holiday book just fine.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Every woman will relate to the characters Penelope Lively draws so sympathetically in this beautifully written novel. Charlotte, in her 70s, is knocked down by a mugger and has to adjust to a sudden loss of independence. Her daughter Rose, middle-aged, falls in love. Stella has to deal with her errant husband, and Marion with the challenges of running a business as the recession bites. All their lives, and those of the men in them, change as a result of that casual mugging. The author understands so well what makes them all tick, and writes with delicacy and humour. It would be a great read but is an even greater listen because of Anna Bentinck's perfectly nuanced reading. All the characters come alive and she respects every word of the text. I have listened to it twice and found it as enjoyable the second time around. Now off to get every other Penelope Lively and anything else read by Anna Benctinck!
4 of 5 people found this review helpful