Nicola Thorne was born in South Africa and, after a spell in New Zealand with her mother who was born in Wellington, came to England as a child where her parents finally separated. She spent her youth in the North of England, where she was educated first at a convent school and then a co-educational school. After completing her education at the London School of Economics she then spent most of her adult life in London. She has made a long career as a writer and is the author of over fifty novels. For a number of years Nicola has been among the top most borrowed authors from public libraries in the UK (PLR statistics) and many of her books have been published in foreign languages apart from English. After fifteen years spent in Dorset, she now lives in Devon.
This book was originally published in 1980 and has now been updated by the author, to bring the setting up to modern times. She has introduced things like computers, mobiles, Cold Play and the coalition government. However, the storyline just doesn't lend itself to being brought up to date. Originally set in the late 70s, that is where the story should stay as the attitudes that are portrayed in the book just do not belong in today's times.
At the start of the book Ruth is a "stepford wife", immaculate house, immaculate husband and children. Hubby comes home every day to a three course lunch which she has lovingly prepared and served with the best cutlery (including napkin rings) whilst changing into full twin set and pearls and perfect make up. Hubby, by the way is a partner in a Solicitors' office, so obviously very important and busy, yet he still finds time to come home every day for lunch, although he has to make up for it by not coming home til 10.00 pm at night! Someone needs a lesson in time management, I think. He firmly believes that a woman's place is in the home, looking pretty creating beautiful meals and having sex with him as often as he can manage it, even if it isn't on one of the nights on his wife's rota.
Basically, all she does is light housework (they have a cleaner), cook, make herself look pretty every day and play bridge twice a week. She isn't even a "lady who lunches" as she is always making lunch for solicitor hubby. SO, when new neighbours arrive she spends every minute she can peaking through the lace curtains at them and in general becoming obsessed, particularly with the husband, Antal - purely because she has got nothing better to do with her time. At this point she really should have gone and got a dog and saved a lot of bother.Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
I absolutely hate to give a bad review to any book because a) although it might not be my cup of tea, it doesn't mean to say it's 'bad' and other people may enjoy it and b) I couldn't do any better. So, this is not a bad review, it's simply an honest opinion. However, I'm afraid I found this a little slow going and gave up on it about a third of the way through. The synopsis shows what could be a good, interesting story, but unfortunately it never seemed to take off. The characters were very well written and the idea is great. The style of writing is a little 'quaint', in my view, but to be fair I think there are lots and lots of ladies out there who would like it. Sorry, but it didn't move quite fast enough for me.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A slice of reality18 Jun 2012
- Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
This is the second book I've read by Nicola Thorne, and I am promptly off to read a third! Once again I felt immersed in the everyday lives of these characters. The story dealt with real life issues such as infidelity and rebellious children, but it doesn't go overboard with fictional dramatics. It really does feel like peaking into the lives of the people down the street. I also love that it does not end with everything tied up in a neat little bow. Like real life, the issues we face do not just disappear, but linger around for us to ponder and deal with in our own time. I cannot speak highly enough of this author.