Jesse's Reviews > The Pursuit of Love & Love in a Cold Climate

The Pursuit of Love & Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford
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Jan 09, 09

Read in January, 2009

Read only the first novel, The Pursuit of Love, and fully intend to make the acquaintance of the second at some point in the future. For few books have made me laugh so consistently--not at anything intentionally humorous, but at the sheer absurdity of it all, and most particularly the very droll, very unique way British upperclass/aristocratic types seemed to communicate with each other in that brief span between the Wars (it would almost seem to be caricature, but there's also a distinct sense of it all being very "lived in"). Mitford gives the novel an interesting dynamic by mixing up expectations: the rather banal storyline is set up as if it is remarkable, enthralling (though the title tells you about all you need to now) while the sublimely ridiculous actions and sayings of the characters are treated as mere unremarkable, completely expected. Of course, this ends up making it all the more funny.

"There they are, held like flies in the amber of that moment--click goes the camera and on goes life; the minutes, the days, the years, the decades, taking them further and further from the happiness and promise of youth... I often think there is nothing quite so poignantly sad as old family groups" (which is, admittedly, atypically melancholy for this book)
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Meg (new)

Meg Rebecca sent me this one last year, and I loved it. :) Mitford is one of my "new" favorites - even if it did take me a few times through to fully appreciate it. ;)


message 2: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca "the sublimely ridiculous actions and sayings of the characters..."

Should I 'oi' this? :p




Sarah "Mitford gives the novel an interesting dynamic by mixing up expectations..."

I think you've really captured, in a nutshell, the appeal of this book. I also think you stole that concluding quote directly from my review. ;-)


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