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A Change In Altitude Hardcover – 5 Nov 2009
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"A winner. Once again, Shreve's fans can approach her book with the confident anticipation that she will provide yet another satisfying experience. "A Change in Altitude "is an unusual kind of page-turner, part whodunit, part adventure story....Readers will vicariously enjoy all facets of this adventure in Africa from the safety of their own armchair."-- Free-Lance Star "Diane Makovsky "
PRAISE FOR A CHANGE IN ALTITUDE:
"Visual and sharply focused....Shreve knows how to keep a reader engaged." Valerie Sayers, "Washington Post""
"No one is better at gently, but thoroughly probing the interior life of her characters than Anita Shreve...."A Change in Altitude "reflects many of Shreve's familiar themes: loss and grief, the relationship between a man and woman, and how one moment can change a life forever. Shreve weaves a strong mix of exotic Africa and interesting characters, producing a potent story that will keep readers thinking about them long after the last page of the novel." Mary Foster, "Newsday""
"Shreve takes readers from Nairobi's lush suburbs to its fetid slums, from the drawing-room world of the white gentry to that of its black servants...."A Change in Altitude "rises a few thousand feet above typical women's fiction." Olivia Barker, "USA Today""
"Prepare to cancel all your appointments as you race through this dramatic saga....Enthralling. The mountains Margaret must climb-literally, and figuratively-are difficult ones. Readers will be eager to learn if she successfully scales the peak." Eliza Borne, "Bookpage""
"Awinner. Once again, Shreve's fans can approach her book with the confident anticipation that she will provide yet another satisfying experience. "A Change in Altitude "is an unusual kind of page-turner, part whodunit, part adventure story....Readers will vicariously enjoy all facets of this adventure in Africa from the safety of their own armchair." Diane Makovsky, "Free-Lance Star""
PRAISE FOR A CHANGE IN ALTITUDE:
"Visual and sharply focused....Shreve knows how to keep a reader engaged." Valerie Sayers, "Washington Post"" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
* A compelling and brilliant novel about the fragility of a new marriage, from one of the greatest chroniclers of the mysteries of the heartSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
The book did not seem to know where it was going and blundered down numerous plot cul-de-sacs which added nothing to the story line or characterisation.Ms Shreve seems to try to introduce an element of mystery for example with a plot line about several unfortunate criminal incidents suffered by the 2 main characters but this seems just to peter out as if the author had decided against developing this aspect of the story.
As another reviewer says the book has an oddly period feel whilst clearly being contemporary and, whilst I am much older than the 2 main characters, they seemed to me old fashioned and unrepresentative of younger people today.I found the characters one dimensional and unsympathetic whilst the author is usually good at creating strong well realised female characters in particular.
To finish on an more upbeat note, I enjoyed the description of the climb up Mount Kenya which was the most vivid part of the book and at some points the novel started to make interesting and important points about the treatment of black Kenyans and the suppression of dissident political opinion in the country-it is a pity that this was not more central.
In summary I think that Ms Shreve might need to find herself a better editor that could bring back the coherence to her writing that this book is in my view so sadly lacking.
The story, in principle, was a good one and I loved reading about Kenya and it's people. The account of the climb up Mount Kenya was good and I found myself "Googling" it to see images and find out more. But I felt the characters (and not just the main ones) lacked depth and emotion and I found it hard to visualise or empathise with any of them. Patrick and Margaret arrived in Kenya as young newlyweds and I found it hard to believe their relationship was affected so badly as a result of the tragic incident on the mountain. I found myself wanting to bash their heads together, yell at them to talk to each other, get angry and shout at each other if necessary. I don't think Margaret deserved to be burdened with all the blame and have to carry the guilt with her for what amounted (in my eyes) to no wrong doing on her part! I don't think people would have had these attitudes in the 70s, particularly young English and Americans. I also found the ending very disappointing with far too many loose ends.
Another reviewer mentioned the fact that the book contained a lot of Kenyan terminology and suggested a glossary would have been helpful. I couldn't agree more on this.
On a more positive note, I thoroughly enjoyed the book, had to keep dipping into it to find out what happened next, and finished it within a few days. I will definitely be trying another of Ms Shreeve's novels.
This is another beautifully written book by Anita Shreve who so obviously painstakingly researched Africa's scenery, culture and language. Everything came alive in front of my eyes.