Customer Review

2.0 out of 5 stars Intelligently Written but Boring, 25 Sep 2009
This review is from: The Ladies' Lending Library (Paperback)
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The best thing about this intelligently written book is its title. I would say intelligent rather than well written as it's too wordy and absolutely full of colons, semi colons etc which completely stopped me getting engrossed in the book. I got jolted out of the narrative too often as the language didn't flow. The first line of the book is 'The Ladies' Lending Library is not an institution; though communal, it certainly isn't public.' These overly constructed sentences are common and the flowery literary style mostly seemed to sit at odds with the story.

1960s Canada and the multitude of characters didn't come alive for me. The title is a bit misleading as this isn't a genteel read about ladies swapping books and discussing them, it's more the passing of racy reads in brown paper bags. Although the synopsis sounds promising I didn't find the subject matter at all interesting. The book blurb says in the style of 'Steel Magnolias' which I also think is misleading as that again was a genteel and entertaining story. This isn't. Perhaps those with a connection with the early 1960s, Ukranian housewives or Canada might find it an interesting book or those who remember the 'Cleopatra' era of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor which was no doubt scandalous at the time. For me though the writer doesn't pique enough interest to make the book compelling and I found it a real struggle to get through (and it's taken me almost 10 months). I do enjoy books which document mother, daughter relationships and the cultural and identity issues between generations that occur when immigrants settle in a new country such as Amy Tan's wonderful books like the 'Joy Luck Club' but this story fell flat for me.

I can't recommend it at all and it completely wasn't my cup of tea. I just didn't find the subject matter enjoyable or entertaining and found the overly stylised sentence constructions annoying. Sorry.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 20 Apr 2014 15:35:15 BDT
Oh c'mon Debbie, what's 'overly' constructed - or do you perhaps mean over-constructed? - about that first sentence? I find punctuation quite helpful myself..
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Review Details

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2.7 out of 5 stars (15 customer reviews)
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debbie8355
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Location: Devon, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 284