- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing Plc (21 Jun. 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1408809133
- ISBN-13: 978-1408809136
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 215 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 222,472 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Bed I Made Paperback – 21 Jun 2010
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'Gripping, believable and unnerving' Independent on Sunday 'Whitehouse writes marvellously in an emotionally hypersensitive, lyrical, Maggie O'Farrell sort of way' --Wendy Holden, Daily Mail
About the Author
Lucie Whitehouse was born in Warwickshire in 1975, read Classics at Oxford University and now lives in London. She is author of The House at Midnight.
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This is a typical Whitehouse novel, full of tension and a dangerous atmosphere that ramps up as the novel progresses. From the description of the plot, I thought Alice's disappearance was going to be a lot more central than it is. Alice is important but the plot primarily revolves around Kate and what she is running from. This is fine but it seemed to me that Whitehouse could have left the Alice plot thread out.
I liked that Whitehouse interspersed the present day with the events leading to her leaving London, always a good way to write a thriller. The plot for 'The Bed I Made' is intense with the danger increasing as the novel progresses. Setting this in an Isle of Wight Winter works fantastically as it provides the eerie, lonely atmosphere that is required.
Kate is a terrific character to follow in this novel, she is realistic but not innocent. The reader gets a real sense of who she is and we can feel sympathy an frustration with her. The backgrounds Whitehouse gives the characters are ideal for explaining their behaviour in the novel.
'The Bed I Made' is thick with anticipation and danger and I could not put it down. Follow Kate as she attempts to outrun her past and reach her future.
I'm 64% through it and really am struggling to finish it. It's dull, nothing happens, no plot, The 'heroine' is a self pitying sap who is befriended by people she doesn't particularly like - probably as they aren't as clever as she. She has no back story other than they would holiday in the IoW every summer. Oh, the author threw in a tiny paragraph about her knowing how to row about 13/16/20 years ago (I forget) just to make it easier to understand the needs of midnight rowing trips without basically drowning. The author over describes EVERYTHING without actually describing anything. She talks about Peters boat down to the finest detail but didn't mention the cabin they sipped their tea (in enamel cups...) in so I haven't the foggiest what this boat actually looked like. Especially as he turned it over himself and dragged it to the 'slip' - nautical terms for us stupidheads. So he must be built like the hulk. Except I don't know apart from blue paint on his hand. Richard (the baddie) only has black hair and menacing eyebrows...I pictured him with a top hat and a twiddly moustache while he tied women up to railway tracks, but that would have made for a more exciting story. Oh and rowing boat benches are called 'thwarts', over described with "&" to remind us ignorant readers. Over and over again.
I don't think the author likes her readers too much.
Captivating because the story is based on an escalating psychological dilemma involving Kate, a thirty-something translator who falls in love with Richard, a man casually met in a bar in London. The connection between the two is immediate. Richard has a somewhat mysterious allure and this fascinates and engulfs Kate so much that she cannot imagine a life without him. However when slightly pressed about moving in together after a few months of passion, Richard changes. He is the bearer of secrets that, once revealed, change the course of both their lives and throw Kate into depression and fear. Kate decides to leave him and moves away, to the Isle of Wight, without disclosing her new location to Richard, hoping never to see or hear from him again. But Richard turns up, if not physically, in subtle, menacing ways...
Once on the Isle of Wight, Kate seeks loneliness. After a while however, she tries to fit in. Yarmouth, where she chooses to stay, has recently been rocked by terrible news, involving the disappearance of a young wife, Alice, lost at sea. Suicide? Murder? Accident? The body does not turn up.
The book mainly deals with stalking, which is well described despite its being such a negative subject. However the reading becomes tedious several times because it is, in my opinion, far too descriptive, especially geographically. If I wanted a good description of some parts of the Isle of Wight, I would have bought a different book. Such descriptions, in the context, render the book a bit boring (nothing personal with the Isle of Wight). It is also, in my opinion, a bit too repetitive about Kate's feelings of frustration and fear (and why, in this day and age, did she not go to the police?). I guess the author wanted to convey such feelings in a precise, detailed way, nothing wrong about that, but it went too far. And the epilogue was weak, too predictable.
So, 3 stars from me, as it is, in some way, a book that makes you turn the pages wanting to find out what happens, but no more than that. Sorry.
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now i have finished it yes good book but i wouldnt really shout about it .