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Landscape of change
on 22 February 2010
Deft depiction of an insular, remote community as seen through the eyes of characters who are questioning their roles in an ultimately permanently changed landscape. The backdrop of WWI only heightens the paranoia and xenophobia in Zennor. The main characters also serve as a poignant illustration of all that is lost to the Great War: their vibrancy and closeness to this coastal, rustic way of life acts as a startling counterpoint to its implied horrors.
I found the inclusion of Lawrence and his wife added depth to this overall picture too, but it never dominated the novel. Clare carries the main focus throughout, and leaves us with a sense of the future, and hope, despite all the tragedy. And I particularly liked the depiction of Clare's father who seems to undergo the most moving awakening towards the end.