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on 25 June 2012
Daphne Before She Died by Michael Allen

At times hilarious, at times poignant, but always entertaining, the book, Daphne Before She Died,Daphne before She Died kept us enthralled to the very end. Young illicit love is rarely explored, especially between partners of such disparate ages. Is it possible for a mature woman of 39 to fall in love with a boy of 18 and he to be desperately in love with her? Would an 18 year old girl indulge in a love affair with a schoolboy of 14? Well, the author inspires us to believe in such possibilities as the sexual and emotional vulnerability of young males, especially one who appears to be a 'man of the world', are explored in depth.

G B Hobson
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on 2 September 2012
Boring, boring, boring. I started reading this expecting an explosive tale of passion and lust but all there seemed to be was page after page of life in a boarding school seen through the eyes of a boarder. The affair that happened would never have been 'pc' but where was the tale of a torrid love affair? I only stuck with it in the hope that the next page would bring a promise of some lustful liaison but nothing happened. I got to the end and wondered why I had bothered. I downloaded this when it was free - had I paid for it I would have been miffed. I really wouldnt bother with this one - it starts off limply and ends the same way.
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on 7 September 2012
I have followed Michael Allen's "Grumpy Old Bookman" blog for some time. This is an entertaining blog in which Allen, a long-time writer, proves both that (a) he knows a lot about books and publishing and (b) he can indeed be grumpy. However, Daphne Before She Died proves that he's also a very accomplished writer as well. This is a well-written, intriguing, sexy tale of extra-marital affairs, recounted many years later by a number of different narrators, and in a number of different styles varying from straight narrative to journalistic, diary-style entries. While, to many people, using several different narrators and styles may break every rule in the book (no pun intended), Allen pulls it off with aplomb. Not only can he write, but he can craft a page-turning plot as well. I will be reading more of Mr Allen.
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on 18 August 2012
I was expecting a biographical memoir of a love affair.
Maybe my expectations were too high.
Id hoped for love, romance, lust, passion,to relive those dizzy heights of when you fall in love and perhaps even at least a chapter along the lines of 50 shades of grey !
But interesting as it was, the whole book was about the life inside a boarding school. The formalities & rules, the lessons and extra curricular activities etc - which I understand that the stage needed to be set....for the love affair.... but the "stage setting" was bigger than the love affairs.
The information /story of the affairs was minimal in comparison.
So I was disappointed.
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