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Customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
10
4.2 out of 5 stars


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on 12 December 2009
Oh my I loved this novel. It is amazing to think that this novel first published in 1927 was Rosamund Lehmann's first novel. It is so beautifully written, passionate and finely observed. The voices of these young people resonate wonderfully. Their manner of speech could seem affected and odd in these modern times, and yet serves to demonstrate for us reading now, the times and emotional confusions of so many young people between the wars. This novel must have caused quite a stir upon it's publication, as the naive Judith becomes enamoured first of Jennifer, a close friend, whilst at Cambridge, and then falls recklessly in love with Roddy, one member of the Fyfe family who had so mesmerised her as a child. The Fyfe's are a family of cousins who dazzle the young Judith and awaken new feelings in her as she grows toward womanhood. The lives of Judith and the Fyfe family are dramatic, sad and sometimes hopeless. Utterly compelling, it is also truly absorbing, and a book I was sorry to finish.
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on 8 February 2000
This was a novel that I came across purely by chance and it really deserves a higher profile. Its descriptions of adolescence are quite dreamlike and yet it still had the power to move me to tears more that once! Although its style lacks the intensity and experimentation of some of its contempories it is nonetheless a real treat.
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on 20 October 2013
I enjoyed the book and the memories of tormented adolescence it evoked, though if everyone followed Dusty's path it would seem we are all doomed to unrequited love. A little flowery in style for today's taste, it nevertheless kept one's interest although the relentless march towards doom in the life virtually everyone involved, except, possibly, the unfeeling Roddy did become a little predictable and I found myself longing for at least one happy ending possibly for the luckless Martin. Interestingly, on re-visiting the book, Rosamond Lehmann disliked it intensely! I shall certainly read another of her books as I would like to see how her writing evolved with maturity.

On reflection, it was enjoyment of the comparison with one's own adolescent romantic experiences that raised the bar to four stars.
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on 13 August 1999
This book deserves to have a wider readership. A story about a girl's love for the family next door - a great coming of age tale.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 26 November 2006
Judith, sensitive, lonely and secretive, meets the family of cousins who move in next door and falls in love with all of them. This exquisite novel follows her relationships, the disappointments, the joys and the ultimate heartbreak that she experiences as she engages with life and grows from an innocent girl to a woman.

Brilliantly written, evocative and passionate, this is, for me, Lehmann's best novel.
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on 29 September 2010
This is a rich and beautiful evocation of adolescence and the years following. Sensitive and very moving, it
relates the touching and tormented relationships of a group of cousins and their young neighbour, Judith.
The emotional involvements of each in their turn come alive, and the reader cannot help sharing the nostalgia and regrets, as well as the joys, of these passionate and totally convincing characters. The superbly evoked natural landscapes blend with their stories ; an unforgettable book.
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on 27 June 2001
'Dusty Answer' is about a young girl called Judith and her life with the Fyfe family next door. At different stages in the book she gets close to each one of them, she starts off her life as a watcher, but soon is joined in to the group. The book deals with death, friendship, broken hearts but mostly with love and is very passionate It also follows her adventures at Cambridge and about her close, consuming relationships there. i really enjoyed reading this book and i think Rosamond Lehmann is a great author.
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on 16 December 2015
So happy to have found this author - what a delight!
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on 12 March 2016
Rather dull novel which I only completed because it was for my book club.
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on 2 January 2013
Language much too flowery for the subject matter. Some good and amusing bits but generally rather childish and unconvincing story
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