Top positive review
8 people found this helpful
Truly moving, beautifully written
on 29 June 2012
Having read some of the reviews here I was wondering if I'd read the same book. I found this book particularly engaging because I have a great affection for Southwold, the Suffolk town where the story is set. Myerson brings the town so much to life with her prose that it is perhaps not surprising that I found her book wonderfully evocative of very happy times spent there.
Some reviewers have criticised her for not using speech marks when writing dialogue. As you read the book however, you realise you are inside the head of Tess, the best friend of Lennie, the murder victim written about at the beginning of the novel. Being inside the head of this character means you see those conversations from her viewpoint - they are not meant to be direct transcripts. Therefore the writing works particularly well and helps us understand the world from her perspective, which is really what the whole book is about. Yes, she is somewhat detached but she has just experienced as huge a trauma as anybody is likely to and is going through a period in her life as so many do, when they question everything in their existence.
The denouement is one of the saddest, most emotionally gut-wrenching I have read in a contemporary novel and again makes me wonder why some have suggested that the ending is unsatisfactory. It is a book that takes the mundane and everyday and turns it into something sharp, sensual and apposite to our lives. Myerson should be applauded for not entering into a whodunnit and for not sensationalising the plot. The point here is that in many ways we live our lives in our heads, and sometimes get lost in those thoughts and emotions. This is a book that allows the reader real insight into those thoughts and hits you right in the solar plexus when key events truly change the protagonists' lives.
A fantastic read and one I would heartily recommend.