The Welsh Girl
Young Esther Evans has lived her whole life within the confines of her remote mountain village. The daughter of a fiercely nationalistic sheep farmer, Esther yearns for a taste of the wider world th...more
It’s said that there are often writers who are novelists, others who are short story writers, and that the crossover can be difficult. It’s also said that Raymond Carver tried all his caree...more
Peter Ho Davies
NUTSHELL: Two plots - one plot = enough plot. This one's more of a 5.
Who's the Welsh Girl? That would be Esther Evans, living in Wales in the 1940s. Her sweetheart's off to war and she and her father have an evacuee child. Esther also works as a barmaid in town.
What's her plot? (view spoiler)[She falls in love with a prisoner of war named Karsten.
But that's not so awful. Um. World War II? And the POW is German?
...right. I can see where that'd be a conflict. Good....more
I think this is the sort of book that will mean different things to different people, and that I will perhaps get something different out of it, if I come back to it in a few years. I enjoy thinking abou...more
A couple of times I think Davies lost control of his novel. A...more
The book is beautifully written. The descriptions a...more
This was a great book that I raced through and couldn't put down. I've read about a hundred good reviews of it and no one seems to have a bad word to say about it - at this point I would be disappointed if it doesn't at least make the shortlist. It's the third book I've read from this year's longlist, and so far it's my favourite.
The setting is the end of the second world war, the location is a small remote village in Wales and the central character is really Esther, the Welsh girl of the title....more
Peter Ho Davies's two short-story collections, Equal Love and The Ugliest House in the World, met with critical acclaim, and reviewers generally enjoyed his first novel as well. Yet while they praised the book's complicated character portraits and its complex themes, many felt that the Rotheram-Hess subplot, while fascinating, was tangential to the novel's main triangle. And, despite the title, Esther does not appear to be the novel's protagonist. Perhaps the troubles begin with the prologue, in...more
The first couple of pages (prologue) were a bit dry, but I was glad that I pushed through it because I discovered a gem when I got to Esther’s perspective of the story. The book follows the perspective of three characters: Roth...more
But. As a lot of reviews have said, the subplot of Rotheram and Hess...more
It reminded me of My German Soldier (MGS), but better. I don't know how accurate my memory is of MGS since I read it over 10 years ago. The Welsh Girl contains dynamic characters, quotable dialogue (especial...more
Firstly, let me say I disliked Esther intensely - and that isn't good if she's the main character. I felt she spent too much time moping and feeling sorry for herself. A sort of innocence...more
In 1992 he moved to the United States as a professor of creative writing. He has taught at the University of Oregon and Emory University and is now on the faculty of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
He has published two...more