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The Decision

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  800 ratings  ·  100 reviews
Set against a vibrant sixties backdrop, this is the story of two bright young things: Eliza, an ex-deb making a splash in the world of fashion, and Matt, a working-class boy carving out a serious name for himself in property. Their story begins with a love affair, closely followed by a marriage, followed by a baby. But whilst their relationship is at first fuelled by passi ...more
Hardcover, 768 pages
Published September 15th 2011 by Headline Review (first published September 1st 2011)
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Joanne Clancy
Penny Vincenzi is one of my favourite writers and she has come up trumps once again with her latest novel "The Decision." Ms Vincenzi's novels are wonderfully chunky affairs, which is always very pleasing to me. There's nothing I enjoy more than sitting down to a good read. Although it is seven hundred and sixty eight pages in length The Decision is an absolute page turner. The book quickly engulfs the reader in its intricately woven story, carrying us back to the Swinging Sixties, a time of hig ...more
I have read several of Penny Vincenzi books and am yet to be disappointed by them. When I first read the back of her new one, I didn't know if I could read it as I wasn't sure of the fighting over the child element, I am a bit sensitive about things like that. I need not have worried. As usual with Penny Vincenzi, she tells you the story of the characters involved and very usually goes right back to the beginning of where that relationship started which was the case here. In my opinion she is on ...more
Sam Still Reading
Dec 27, 2011 Sam Still Reading rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those who like chick lit with brain activity
Recommended to Sam Still Reading by: read other books by the same author
I really like Penny Vincenzi’s books – you know that you are guaranteed an interesting plot, well written characters and an element of surprise. The Decision is no exception. It is slightly unusual in that you know what will happen to the main characters Eliza and Matt ultimately – it’s no secret that they will get divorced. But it is an interesting reflection on what leads to a marriage and then its downfall. All but the epilogue is revealed by the blurb on the back cover. Is it still worth rea ...more
Kate Loveday

I have previously read and enjoyed several of Penny Vincenzi’s books. However, with over 700 pages I found The Decision rather slow going, particularly in the first half, and skimmed through many of the long descriptive passages. The book begins with the revelation that a divorce is pending. Through the rest of the book we learn the poignant story of Eliza and Matt, from the madly passionate love that draws them together through the heart-breaking disintegration of their marriage, and the hurt i
Liz Balaam
The thing I love about Penny Vincenzi is that her characters are so real and believable. I can't stand books where the characters are ultra rich and pages are dedicated to their designer clothes, expensive jewellery, flashy cars and the type of champagne they drink. Sure there are people like that but not in the circles I move in. In this book Matt made money, but he was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth - he worked for it and was therefore a believable character. I also liked that Eliza ...more
Another triumph for Penny Vincenzi. Like all her books, this one is absolutely riveting. It made me lose sleep - I couldn't put it down.

It gives a poignant portrayal of marriage breakdown and what the effects can be on friends and family.

I found the judge's decision in the custody/residency case somewhat unrealistic, but hey that's fiction !

I didn't really enjoy this book, it was very slow, I am surprised I stuck with it to the end, I wouldn't recommend.
Pilbara Girl
Have been attempting to read this book for over two weeks, only at page 98, justbcan't get into it, surprising as I have enjoyed most of the other PV books I have read.

I think I'll give it the weekend, but if it doesn't start to grab my attention, I shall hve to put this one to one side and move onto my next book. (feels like a waste of $23aus)

If I continue to read will update review.

Kept trying to read, just couldn't get into it. Gave up and started to read Sidney Sheldon's The Naked Fa
Fleme Varkey
Is it love or lust that brings people together? Penny Vincenzi’s characters seem to ask the very same question Penny Vincenzi’s 857-page door-stopper, begins: ”Eliza was in the middle of curtseying to the Queen, when she decided it was time she lost her virginity.” Well, this is just the beginning. Vincenzi has made a page-turner full of the sexual exploits and emotional upheavals of a pair of siblings. For all those who are demotivated by the size of the book, I would suggest you give it a skip ...more
Beth Lloyd
The final chapter was the only time it grasped my attention. The final chapter was good, the previous 11000000 chapters (well that's how many it felt like) were slow, and many of them could have been edited out with no impact to the storyline. It had potential to be good, but it was too long, too many characters (It was hard to keep track and I kept confusing certain people and having to go back to make sense).
I wanted to give up, but I had already spent weeks and weeks (normally a book takes m
I have previously read and enjoyed several of Penny Vincenzi’s books. The book begins with the revelation that a divorce is pending. The premis of the story is the relationship between Eliza and Matt, who meet and fall in love in the swinging sixties, even though they come from very different class backgrounds. The story centers around their life's and their friends and family. It covers the first days of passion through to their unhappy relationship, and than to their divorce.

The book's over 70
This is a big book, and it took me a while to get into it, but I did enjoy it. The story is set in the 1960s when men's attitudes to women, anywhere other than the home, were quite different to how they are now (or at least I'd like to think so!) The main characters are Eliza and Matt, but I did find it quite frustrating in the second half of the book when they encounter problems in their marriage that they just don't talk to each other, or at least they don't listen to each other. Most of the c ...more
Ana Fernandes
Infelizmente há cada vez mais situações destas.
E as crianças acabam por sofrer imenso com tudo isto.
Nesta história a criança consegue fazer os pais sobretudo a pensar no bem-estar dela, mas infelizmente na vida real o final não é assim tão feliz*
This is my first read by Penny Vincenzi. It was daunting first by it's size but it's summer and a good time to crack it's pages. It took a long time to move into the story, even though it wasn't complex at all. I come out of the 60s and understood the period with the "class" breakdown. About half way through was beginning to look forward to reading it, and glad I persevered!! Enjoyed the relationships between the characters and the decisions each faced - and the consequences showing the depth an ...more
I liked this book because the characters were all really well developed. Unfortunately for some, they didn't evolve and were very self absorbed - however - that only provoked the story. It was quite a long book, took a lot of days to finish - but worth it. I was terribly disappointed that Matt never got a comeuppance of any kind - would have liked him to have a smack down at some point just because he was so self-important and unmoving. He really needed to know that the world didn't revolve arou ...more
A good yarn!
Could not put this down.
I really loved this book initially, I loved how the characters lives intertwined. However, I did not like how the author felt the need for all loose ends to be tied. Also, some of the characters weren't very well thought out- like Emmie, the daughter of Eliza and Matt, was a truly horrible little girl! A few people have commented on the size of the book as a negative, but I felt it was exactly the right length to explain the character's histories.
Barbara Taylor
I love Penny Vincenzi books and couldn't wait to get stuck into this one. It certainly lived up to its expectations regarding plot, characters and setting however it was perhaps just a little too long. I felt that the court case end of the book was too drawn out - yes I realise it was an important part of the story but it just didn't reasonate the same way as the rest did. A disappointing ending as it felt rushed and a bit contrived. Perfect holiday read.
Rachel Brown
I have read a few of her books and like the history of the family and all the characters that she puts into the books with intercepting storylines. I read this one while on the beach in Mexico--easy read and did keep my attention throughout the book. Recommend this for those that are looking for a book with lots of characters, love, suspense etc. I read this in book format and it was enormous carrying around--had wished it was on my kindle.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Although it took me a while to get into the storyline...when I finally did, it took me away! I loved how Eliza struggled to have Matt understand how working was a part of her identity and wanted/needed to return...I feel even in present day some women still struggle to have men realize the importance of their independence to their well-being.

A great read for many to enjoy and relate to!
Characters are well described and one can enter into their lives very easily. Couldn't put it down.
This book was a tome to say the least - like three paperbacks in one.
I read the reviews of others and many say it's not her best but I really enjoyed this one.
A sad but very true indictment of what happens all too often in today's society - the passion, the realisation it was a bad idea and the split - all within a few years and then with the child sandwiched in between...
I used to absolutely love Penny Vincenzi's books and would eagerly look forward to them as a long, meaty, guilty pleasure. This was OK, but I don't think it was as well done as some of her earlier books. However, being a child of the Sixties in London, I got a lot of happy memories back about that time, and the feeling of Swinging London was very well evoked.
Thoroughly enjoyable. Read it in a weekend (as I have with most of Penny's books) I actually put off starting it as I was worried I would be disappointed. I wasn't. Not quite as good as some of her others - The Spoils of Time trilogy in particular, but still a fun feel good romp through the world of fashion, real estate and the perils of class-ism.
Jess Wilson
One of my favourite authors, however I was very disappointed in this book. Very slow going especially towards the end and the main characters and their storyline really dragged. I have enjoyed her other books especially when they spanned over generations and the families history really take shape. I hope her next book reverts to her original writings.
Donna Irwin
The first decision that was wrong was buying this book thinking it would be good because I have liked PVs previous books! What a lot of unsympathetic characters, they all deserved each other, esp the main three characters, Maw, Paw and spoilt Wain. Only read it to see what happened and that wasnt a lot. Sooooooooo disappointed!
Hilary Marson
So far, I find this overly complicated with a huge amount of people being introduced, which results in continually checking the list of characters. Finding it annoying at the moment, Very slow to get to the point, can't see why this was a best seller. May well give up on it - far too vapid. Shall get back to Spartapuss!!
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I was nine years old when I embarked on my storytelling career. I wrote my own magazine called “Stories”, which I copied out three times on carbon paper and sold for two
More about Penny Vincenzi...
No Angel (The Spoils of Time, #1) Something Dangerous (The Spoils of Time, #2) Into Temptation (The Spoils of Time, #3) The Best Of Times Sheer Abandon

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