Once again Vintage are giving us a treat with another great tale form the late Irene Nemirovsky. Nemirovsky had the great talent of getting under the skin of her main characters, and to a certain extent ours.
To be honest I couldn't put this book down, it immediately captivated and held me from the very beginning and is sure to be a success. Our story opens with Gladys Eysenach on trial for the murder of her younger lover. With the trial concluded we are then taken on a trip back into different periods of time, where we learn more about Gladys, what she was like and how vain she is. With the current plethora of adverts offering men as well as women the chance to stay looking 'young' this book is very modern and will bound to be on many a reading groups list. Gladys herself just wants to be loved as an attractive woman and can't abide aging and losing her looks, but in her case she is prepared to go to extreme measures to keep hidden her real age. As the story progresses you go from feeling sorry for Gladys, to eventually reviling her, as more and more becomes apparent about her vanity and selfishness, and why she really committed murder. Sandra Smith who translated this is also provides a short introduction where you can see that this book in some ways mirrors Irene Nemirovsky's relationship with her own mother.
All in all this is a fantastic book that you will be bound to come back to time and time again.