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Customer Review

on 15 January 2014
This final book in the trilogy which began with 'Orange Bitter Orange Sweet' centres on most of that book's characters, and on Nick and Andy from the second book. The surviving characters, notably Alex and Borja, are thirty years older. Where the first book was about self-discovery, passion, betrayal and the desperation of love found and lost, this is about contentment and continuity brutally torn apart by illness and death. The ups and downs of life have brought, not a state in which all passion is spent, but one in which the depth of love is matched only by the extent of loss.
But that is only part of the story. In a Seville as seductive as in the first book, the surviving youngsters of post-Franco Spain meet up to revisit their old haunts and rediscover their friendship. Of course, the place as well as the people, has moved in time: you cannot step into the same river twice. All this, and the changing, complex dynamics between people who have lived unpredictable lives, are portrayed with charm, humour, tenderness, insight and pathos. Most of the characters have more of their lives behind them than in front of them. Possibilities are no longer limited and, anyway, are constrained by past experience and relationships. But there are new beginnings. The story is compelling and uplifting and made me want to read the whole trilogy once again.
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