Customer Review

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nowhere near her best, but still a good read, 31 July 2011
This review is from: Winter Solstice (Paperback)
I feel a bit guilty about criticising this book - it feels like trashing a much-loved and still stylish grandma for being past her best.
Rosamunde Pilcher is a good, old fashioned storyteller, and her stories are about families coming to terms with crises. The families aren't always related, and the crises are wide ranging, from war and sudden bereavement to moving house and going away to school. If you like a big family saga to fall into then they don't come any better than her two bestsellers, The Shell Seekers and Coming Home. I've read them over and over again. Escapist in the best possible sense, well written, great stories and scene setting, wonderful characters, impossible to put down. And, though I don't want to get all ageist, I'd say they're books for grown-ups, and a welcome relief from all the chick-lit sex and shopping sagas we get nowadays.
This is her last novel and I wouldn't say it's a book too far, but it's not in the same league as her earlier work. The characters aren't as likeable or as interesting, the relationships aren't as credible, the plot isn't as gripping - and all the loose ends are tied up so neatly at the end, it would make even Maeve Binchy blush! For the first time, I found the tone a little out of date, and even rather snobbish.
But for all that, it's a still a good read and I quite enjoyed it. Even at her worst, it's better than a lot of the more fashionable stuff that gets published these days. I'll miss her books.
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4.4 out of 5 stars (179 customer reviews)
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