5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Light On Snow (Paperback)
Whilst I will continue to be a great fan of Shreve's work having read 'Light on Snow', I would have to agree with past reviewers who have commented that it is - at least in comparison with her other novels - somewhat disappointing.
The hallmarks of Shreve's talent are certainly present in the novel: a gift for subtlety in description, attention to detail in creating a sense of place, and a slow, pensive quality which adds a great deal of depth to her stories. In fact, this all leads me to believe that the fault in this particular novel must lie merely in the plot... How simplistic it must seem to say "It just felt like nothing really happened", but as I finished reading I rather felt like I had gone for a 2 hour walk to take in a landscape which had been beautiful, certainly, but ultimately unremarkable.
Where her other novels - most notably 'Eden Close' and 'Body Surfing' - have moved or struck me greatly in one way or another, all that stood out for me in 'Light on Slow' was the mildly irritating attitude of 12 year old Nicky. This was perhaps unavoidable, since a degree of immaturity has to be conveyed when using a young narrator, but I felt it could have been tempered had Shreve made use of the fact it was allegedly an adult Nicky telling the story through her younger self - some more mature reflections, perhaps, on the actions and tantrums which made the narrator grate on me somewhat. However no such reflections were included, and consequently I (as admittedly a rather intolerant reader...) found myself feeling less sympathetic towards poor Nicky than I think Shreve intended!
I wouldn't totally disregard this book as an example of Anita Shreve's considerable written ability, nor would I claim to have been utterly unmoved by the characters and plot; however, I would certainly recommend other of her novels above this one, as I wouldn't want disappointment in 'Light on Snow' to prevent readers from discovering some of her other gems.