Brian's Reviews > The Very Thought of You

The Very Thought of You by Rosie Alison
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May 09, 12

Read in November, 2010

I generally enjoy novels set during the Second World War. It's a period when stakes were high and when British society was struggling to reshape itself in the face of imminent catastrophe. So when I saw that this story took place in a stately home converted into a school for evacuees, run by a couple whose marriage was under terrible strain after he had become crippled by polio, I thought it sounded as if it might be a good read.

Unfortunately, this wasn't for me. The narrative seemed to have only one pace and there was altogether too much tell and not enough show. I also wasn't engaged by the way dialogue was conveyed. There were hardly any real conversations. Instead, there were a number of sketchy summaries of attitude and opinions. Finally, the viewpoint was constantly changing so that I found myself asking whose story this was meant to be.

I suspect the manuscript needed more editing than it received and that there was at least one more stage that it needed to go through before becoming a really good novel. But I didn't finish the book. So this isn't a fair review. Perhaps it improved after I gave it up.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Katherine Oh, I love it--you are right--something needed to happen to end their misery. They certainly weren't aware of the War, so absorbed in their own small dramas!

Jennww2ns No, it didn't improve. In fact, it got worse. You did the right thing in not finishing it.

message 3: by Brian (last edited Oct 02, 2013 01:54PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Brian Oh dear! Actually my original review of this was much more scathing. I went back and made it milder because I thought I might have been too harsh.

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