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The Ice House [Hardcover]

Nina Bawden
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

Aug 1983
At fifteen, Daisy, confident and cherished, is appalled to hear that Ruth's father locked her in the old garden ice house as a childhood punishment: no wonder her friend shelters in make believe. The revelation of that primitive cruelty cements a friendship in which protection plays no small part. Years later, middle aged, they remain close friends and live on the same street. So when Daisy's husband dies suddenly, Ruth's discovery that the marriage was unhappy is the first stage in the unravelling of the certainties she has wrapped around her adult life. Friendship, love, marriage and, above all, the scorching effects of adultery, come under the microscope in this dextrous novel. Journeying from a terrifying suburban household to its unexpected conclusion in the Egyptian Pharaoh's tombs, The Ice House is startling, tragic and humorous by turns.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: St Martins Pr (Aug 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312403860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312403867
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 14 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,272,328 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Nina Bawden, CBE, is one of Britain's most distinguished and best-loved novelists. She has published over forty novels and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Circles of Deceit. In 2004 she received the PEN Award for a Lifetime's Service to Literature. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Perceptively Observed and Entertaining Story 28 Jan 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In 1951, fifteen-year-old Daisy, the happy child of devoted parents, is horrified when she visits school friend, Ruth, and witnesses Ruth's war-damaged father beating Ruth for a minor disobedience. Feeling sorry for the quiet, dark Ruth, Daisy makes an effort to be kind to her, and so starts a close friendship that lasts for many years to come. Some thirty years later, we find Daisy married to Luke Brett, and Ruth married to Joe Aberdare, all four living quite amicably in the same terrace of pretty Georgian houses in London. Ruth, we learn, has been very happily married to Joe for more than twenty years and she has her own successful clothing business, however lately she has been concerned that Joe might be having an affair, but can't quite bring herself to confront him. It is not until a tragedy befalls Daisy, and Ruth is shocked by Daisy's reaction to the tragic event, that Ruth begins to question how happy and secure her own life and marriage actually is. And when Ruth begins to examine herself and the man she thought she knew and trusted, she realizes that self-deception can be really rather dangerous. But Ruth is not the only person deluding herself in this story and she is not the only one who needs to examine her behaviour.

A perceptively observed story of love, adultery, friendship and human frailties, this novel like all of Nina Bawden's novels, is beautifully written, incisive and ironically amusing.
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