Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Great Indoors” as Want to Read:
The Great Indoors
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Great Indoors

2.95  ·  Rating Details ·  214 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
It's not that Martha Bone doesn't like children. It's more that they don't fit into her world: her shop, with its succession of beautiful distressed antiques; her flat, with its creamy sofa, its unwashable linen scatter-cushions, its aura of oatmeal and sand. Her sisters don't understand how she can live her life as she does, but Martha thinks everything looks just fine.

Paperback, 338 pages
Published 2003 by Time Warner
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Great Indoors, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Great Indoors

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Michele Bolay
Aug 11, 2009 Michele Bolay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm surpised at the low overall rating. Maybe Martha is a difficult heroine for some people? Granted, I'm an Anglophile who loves repressed characters. ;-) Anyway, I liked it enough to explore Durrant's other work.
Shay Noble
Nov 03, 2013 Shay Noble rated it really liked it
Durrant's main character, Martha, feels like the odd one out in her family and like she doesn't really fit in anywhere. She's 38, single and childless and spends her days working in her Antiques shop. She like things to be 'just right' but as she begins to delve into her past and uncovers some old school friends and ex-boyfriends her social life begins to blossom and her world is changed. I really enjoyed 'The Great Indoors,' it was a great read.
Jul 01, 2009 Ruth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this beautifully descriptive book and its quirky characters. Truly a lovely read!
Sep 24, 2008 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book started out quite slow but I got into it more as the book went along. I didn't like the end however, I was quite disappointed with that.
May 28, 2013 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story brought me right into Martha's antique shop and beckoned me into her family and all it's idiosyncrasies. Great story telling. Ver enjoyable and relatable read!!
Mar 30, 2014 Alison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-reading
I thoroughly enjoyed this. Great characters and wonderful details. I was sorry to say goodbye.
May 04, 2013 Milissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
one of my favorite books. sweet, interesting, and surprisingly
Mar 06, 2010 Stacy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The best way for me to write about this book is to take from the book cover:
A novel about what happens when mess life and love intrude on a young woman's prefectly ordered existence.

The back cover:
Martha Bone doesn't have children; she has furniture. She doesn't have a husband; she has her shop — Martha Bone Antiques, in a fashionable London suburb. Her married sisters can meddle all they want, but that is just the way she likes it. Though Martha loves her niece and nephews, children don't real
If you are looking for an action filled book, this is not it. I enjoyed the dynamics of the 3 sisters. While I was never blessed with a sister, I think it is an accurate description with all of their warts and beauty marks. Their relationship with their handsome father Seems accurate too. Birth order and age at their parents divorce seems to influence their relationship with him and life in general. Two lines jumped out at me- both are near the end. "Isn't it the fear of something breaking rathe ...more
The London setting of this quiet, slice-of-life story is beautifully painted with a few understated brush strokes, much like the apartment of the protagonist is elegantly furnished with a careful eye for serene balance - yet something doesn't quite work. It isn't until the very end of this small glimpse into Martha's life that everything did come together, at least for me as a reader, leaving me with some hope that her passivity was tempered with new wisdom and a breath of fresh air, like openin ...more
Sutter Lee
Jun 02, 2014 Sutter Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Durrant's writing, and this novel, remind me a lot of Ann Tyler's books, with such quirky characters and overall mood. I think her prose is lovely and overall book very well written. Vivid descriptions. Especially loved the clown and his kids. All characters distinct and amusing. Protagonist Martha Bone seems to repeat the same mistakes in deciding on what kind of a life she wants, but I liked observing her. The three sisters would drive me crazy with their constant telephone calls and living th ...more
Megan Brogdon
Jun 30, 2016 Megan Brogdon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While I dont usually "love" the everyday kind of novels, where nothing really happens and we follow the characters to and fro with no real direction, I loved this book. I will say, I am a little disappointed with the ending, though. For a moment, it was cliche and the next, it abruptly ended. I love the English jargon and dialect as well as the author's ability to have me hate characters, like characters and leave some of them just in the middle. Not a whole lot going on but a good and light rea ...more
Oct 28, 2009 Chana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit, british, funny
It is British, it is funny, it has a cat in it; it was practically an RX prescription for me. The ending is little "over"; oversentimental, overlong, overdue. There are a couple of scenes that didn't ring true at the end like the reaction of the adults to 3 kids, 2 dogs and the sound of large amounts of breaking glass in the bathroom. The ending was not as good as the rest of the book, but I still liked it overall.
Tymir Kearse
Apr 07, 2011 Tymir Kearse rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: teens
Recommended to Tymir by: friend
this book is so confusing but im trying to work it out but now that im on page 275 the book gets better. im only 13 and i don't think this book is suitable for kids that are under 13yrs old. i say that because in the begging it an ok book but towards the end of the book they start saying bad things and doing inapropriate things.
Oct 09, 2010 Cherie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found this story to be predictable and slow. I did feel for the main character and what she was going through as a single woman who feels she should settle down with guy A (Mr. Perfect) when guy B is who she can't get out of her head. Can't say that I would recommend this to single or attached women.
Jan 12, 2015 Leslie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pleasant read. Not earth shattering and I didn't really really like anyone in the book, but finely characterized relationships.
Kate Millin
Mar 19, 2012 Kate Millin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
About extended families –could identify with some characters and made me think about relationships with family and friends
Sue Kozlowski
Martha is single and lives in England. She owns an antiques store. She doesn't like kids. Goes back out with an old boyfriend, David, but also likes Fred, the magician.
Oct 24, 2011 Kara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: brit-chick-lit
Very British. No real ending. It was on my to-read list forever, and now that I've read it, I can't understand why I put it on there in the first place. Just an OK book.
Jul 28, 2016 Andreab rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I did not enjoy this book. It was a struggle to finish. There just wasn't enough going on in this book tog grab my attention. I kept waiting for things to pick up and it never did. Yawnnnnn!
Katie Gonzalez
A bit depressing. The main character is trying to figure out her life, but only gets partway there.
Sep 07, 2010 Kiki rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-reads
Pretty slow - Great if you love things being described in detail. Could relate to almost all the characters. Wasn't that pleased with the ending.
Jan 22, 2014 Meaghan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
wasnt the best book ever but it wasnt the same old chick lit either. different and interesting. the characters were real and the plot was unique.
I don't know if I liked it or not. There were some sad moments, some that made me think. I'm deciding whether to keep it, or sell it.
Jolieg G
Jul 10, 2016 Jolieg G rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Geen aanrader wat mij betreft,, het verhaal is wat flauwtjes..
Gaat ze voor hem of kiest ze voor zichzelf...
May 16, 2011 Alexandria rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-fic
Found this book to be a little dry and stark. Characters were delightfully awkward, and plain. reasonably engaging; written with a realists eye for emotional baggage and human relationships.
Helen Alper
Dec 30, 2008 Helen Alper marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-group
Marcia rated it really liked it
Sep 15, 2012
Cathy rated it it was ok
Jun 02, 2010
Ronni rated it did not like it
May 22, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
  • What Comes After Crazy
  • Johnny Too Bad: Stories
  • Eating Mammals: Three Novellas
  • Wives of the Fishermen
  • Frek and the Elixir
  • Quality of Care
  • Swiftly
  • Accidental Happiness
  • The Coyote Kings of the Space-Age Bachelor Pad
  • His Other Wife
  • The Second Silence
  • Clyde Fans, Book 1
  • Wives Behaving Badly
  • Fat Chance
  • The Dead Heart
  • Everything Must Go
  • Ordinary Love and Good Will: Two Novellas
  • The Friend Who Got Away: Twenty Women's True Life Tales of Friendships that Blew Up, Burned Out or Faded Away
Sabine Durrant lives in London, England, with her three children.
More about Sabine Durrant...

Share This Book

“You carry people around with you in your character; all the people you have been close to have made you a little bit of what you are.” 6 likes
More quotes…