Top critical review
6 of 7 people found this helpful
Maybe I'm missing something but...
on 10 August 2011
...it seems I'm in the minority in not exactly being overwhelmed by this novel. I found it a fairly decent, though not spectacular read if I'm honest and this is the sort of book that I will easily forget about now that I've finished it. I'm not knocking the writing style, which was certainly appealing enough- its just I found it hard to feel any kind of connection or empathy with the main characters and the plot itself seemed a bit dry and uninteresting though the premise had initially appealed to me.
The book is about `self-made' man, Sam, a financier who seems to have it all- a great job and a beautiful fiancée. It's not until he encounters Kay, a married American woman at a mutual friends wedding and he feels an instant connection with her that he wonders if he has really been as happy as he thought. The two of them begin a powerful affair that threatens to destroy them both.
This is the story of love, romance and taking risks and contains some other very heavy subject matters. It is also set against the collapse of the economy, which whilst I found a nice piece of symbolism, did make the story a little bit duller than what I'd anticipated.
My feelings about the characters in this book were also mixed- I didn't particularly like any of them, barring Jenni, quite possibly because I didn't approve of their actions, but generally I found them lacking in any particular substance. I also had to suspend my disbelief somewhat at the end of this novel- it just grew borderline ridiculous and the sensationalism didn't seem to anchor very well with the rest of the book. Despite that though, the author is very good in creating a vivid scene and I had no trouble in imagining the multiple settings and surroundings depicted in the novel itself. The novel shifts between some interesting places which I feel were portrayed quite clearly.
As I'm in the minority in not being knocked out by this book, maybe this is one you need to try for yourself? It could be that I'm missing the point or not picking up on the something wonderful about this book that other reviewers have fallen on- though if that is indeed the case then I completely fail to see what that is. My lasting thoughts of this book: it was a fairly pleasant way to pass a couple of hours, but certainly didn't set my world on fire.