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Cheerful Weather For The Wedding [Hardcover]

3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 119 pages
  • Publisher: JOHN LEHMANN (1950)
  • ASIN: B002AGNP0Y
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,945,163 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By Suzie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Oh dear, I seem to be in the minority here! Until now I have loved all of the Persephone republications that I have read, but I didn't care so much for this short novella.

The idea of a bride (Dolly Thatcham) who really shouldn't be marrying the man she is about to wed is interesting, but we don't actually meet Dolly until about halfway through the book. After this point the `story' becomes more absorbing and there is much to glean from beneath the surface that is merely hinted at. Until then though we are presented with an array of people, mainly relatives who have gathered at the house before the wedding, most of whom feel more like caricatures than real people. The mother of the bride is exaggeratedly irritating, but she does at least provide moments of amusement and is one of the few characters you feel you are beginning to know. The others are more like passing strangers apart from Dolly, and the rather strange Joseph who had been close to her the previous summer before she met Owen and who, after the wedding, when the bride and groom have left, makes a startling revelation. That it doesn't seem possible in terms of timing and hence doesn't ring true makes its inclusion all the more puzzling.

Apart from some descriptive passages, I found the writing style uninspiring, but the main cause of my disappointment was, I think, the characters. Nevertheless, I'm pleased I read it, but I wouldn't rush to recommend it. There are plenty of other Persephone gems that are, in view, more endearing and worthwhile - the short story collection Good Evening, Mrs Craven by Mollie Panter-Downes, for instance, or Someone at a Distance, or Miss Buncle's Book, a delight from start to finish.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Marriage is a totally mistaken idea' 5 July 2008
The 'midget of a village woman, like a mosquito' who pants and grunts around setting up the after-wedding tea may make this comment in passing, but in this short novel it is only too apparent that the marriage between Dolly Thatcham and Owen Bigham is indeed a totally mistaken idea. Bearing a resemblance to Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway, the book takes the reader through the day of the wedding, the before and after - notably missing out the wedding itself. We are sucked into a clamouring household - each individual bearing their own preoccupations with an edginess typical of a 'big day'. That alone made me want to run in any and every other direction. The bride's mother, Mrs Thatcham has a birdlike nervousness and a prattling stupidity that is in direct contrast to her daughter's languid gloom and inability to make her voice heard. It is only 119 pages but it is exhausting in it's heightened emotions and lack of peace. For there is another man, and the other man loves Dolly too - although neither have ever said it and both seem too stupified to say it now, or even consider it worth saying. Joseph runs to find her as a hammer in his head bangs out 'stop the wedding' over and over again, but when he does find Dolly (after a comedy of just missing her in each room in the house) she is preoccupied with covering up the ink she has spilled over her dress and says shortly 'you can tell me anything you like afterwards'. Julia Strachey's writing is stunning. Her characterisation is entirely unique, yet describes everything in a way that is so recognisable you wonder how you've never seen it that way before. Read more ›
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short but Stunning 28 Aug 2009
By Simon Thomas VINE VOICE
I loved every second! This short novel (120pp) all takes place on the wedding day of Dolly and Owen. And it's very, very funny. There is a semi-serious romance storyline through the centre of it (should Dolly be marrying Owen? Will they actually get married?) but it is the host of secondary characters which make this novel (or perhaps novella?) so amusing. My favourites are brothers Robert and Tom - the latter spends the entire novel trying to persuade the former to change his emerald-coloured socks: "Robert, your mother would desire you to go upstairs instantly to take off those bounder's socks, Robert, and to change into a respectable pair. Will you go, Robert?" He is distraught lest their schoolfellows - 'men from Rugby' - be at the wedding and witness this calamatous social faux pas. Robert's iterated response is "Go and put your head in a bag." I kept hoping these two would crop up, even though they essentially said the same thing every time they appeared, it was done so amusingly and accurately that I could have read pages of Tom's serious monotone and Robert's complete lack of care.

And then there's dotty Nellie-from-the-village, one of the 'help':

"The gentleman that come to see about the hot pipes out in the lobby, said to me, ' have two of my own,' he said, 'what are both of them big strapping great boys by now. And oh... good golly! - what devils and demons they do be!' he said. 'Well,' I said to him, 'my son Teddy is exactly the very same thing over again,' I said. 'All the time this cigarette-smoking, they pointed boots, and all of it, why, devils and demons isn't in it with such as they are,' I said. No. Very decidedly not!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable.
Having recently read an autobiography about Julia Strachey, thought that I'd give one of her books a go. It was O.K, good for a short holiday read, but nothing too special. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Willow
2.0 out of 5 stars Not the greatest.
Having read ambivalent reviews- i opted for the audio version read wonderfully by Miriam Margoyles.
The story meanders and there are multiple characters - so many, that it is... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Panda
3.0 out of 5 stars Not my favourite Persephone title
I had read about Cheerful Weather for the Wedding in the Persephone catalogue. I liked the sound of it, the premise being that it follows a young bride on her wedding day,... Read more
Published 15 months ago by K. L. Beeden
4.0 out of 5 stars A lovely film.
I really enjoyed this film. I found myself smiling all the time, as the little domestic disasters unfold, and one wonders. Will she or won't she get married on this day? Read more
Published 18 months ago by Helle Dorrit Sorensen
4.0 out of 5 stars An Enchanting and Amusing Domestic Comedy
First published by Leonard and Virginia Woolf's Hogarth Press in 1932, Julia Strachey's 'Cheerful Weather for the Wedding' reads almost as if it was written as a play, and when you... Read more
Published on 4 Aug 2012 by Susie B
1.0 out of 5 stars Is it me?
Very very rarely do I not read to the end of a book - but sadly I could not battle through the tedium of this slim volume. Read more
Published on 25 Nov 2011 by Linda
5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect novella
This novella, written in the 1930s, is a delight from start to finish. The action takes place over the course of a day as friends and family gather at a country house for Dolly's... Read more
Published on 12 Oct 2010 by Eleanor
5.0 out of 5 stars gift
This was a Christmas present for my elder daughter and she was delighted with it.
Published on 6 Jan 2010 by Richard Hallam
3.0 out of 5 stars Only the weather is cheerful
This book is really short, but introduces lots of characters in its pages. I felt I only knew two characters well by the end - the mother of the bride, outrageous in her inability... Read more
Published on 5 Dec 2008 by Miss Mapp
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