Most helpful positive review
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Easy and satisfying, once you get into it
on 29 June 2008
This is the first Rosie Thomas book I have read and I loved it once I got into it. That, for me, is the only criticism. Since finishing `Constance', I have started reading `Iris and Ruby' and was hooked after the first few pages. Reading `Constance', it took almost 60 pages to achieve the same effect.
After the prologue, which sets the scene for the story that follows - of a foundling, and how she finally comes to terms with her unconventional start in life - the scene switches to Bali where Connie has made her home. It is here that I felt the story dragged. There is much detail about filming a commercial for which Connie has written the music and, while this serves to introduce certain characters who play a minor role later in the book, there are several who never feature again. I found it not all that interesting and too drawn out.
But once the story switches to Connie's life in her adoptive family, I became intrigued about what would follow and how she progressed from abandoned baby to successful career woman. It seems as if the only person in the family who loves her is Tony, her adoptive father, and when he dies she is lost. Later, when Connie falls in love it is with a man who is not free to be hers. It is no wonder she is restless, with no real sense of her identity.
Her relationship with her deaf sister, Jeanette, is portrayed sensitively and realistically - the tensions that vibrate between the two are almost tangible. Events build to a point where they do not communicate. When Connie hears that Jeanette is dying of cancer, she rushes back from Bali to be at her side - to say more would reveal details that would spoil the story, which is told as a series of flashbacks interwoven with the present, and from several viewpoints. This works well and helps add to the anticipation.
It's not the best book I've read recently, but it is a satisfying well-written story if you like to read about relationships and how they affect the people involved. It would be perfect to take on holiday, as it's an easy read and long enough to retain the interest.