Moppet's Reviews > The Valley of Decision

The Valley of Decision by Marcia Davenport
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's review
Sep 12, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: 19th-century, 20th-century, family-saga, historical-fiction, second-world-war, victorian-novels, first-world-war
Read from September 12 to 18, 2010

Epic, powerful, sweeping - just like a saga should be. Full review to follow shortly.

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Reading Progress

09/12/2010 page 24
3.0% "Looks promising! Saga of a steel mill-owning Pittsburgh family from the 1870s to the 1940s. As the book opens a financial panic is on (sounds familiar) and Mary, a young Irish girl, has just joined the family as a between-maid. This was a Florence King recommendation and she's yet to let me down." 1 comment
09/13/2010 page 218
28.0% "Took a little while to get going but now the book is barrelling along. Forbidden love, elopements, suicide, murder, seductions, betrayals - and we're only 10 years into a 70-year saga. Lots of period detail but it's not overwhelming, just as much as you need to know. This is the old-fashioned type of saga which doesn't go beyond the bedroom door, but it's character-driven, so who cares? Can't put it down."
09/13/2010 page 218
28.0% "Oh here we go...the reading of the will. Has this ever happened outside a book or film? There was a good twist on this trope in A Woman of Substance, when Emma Harte read out her own will before her demise and told the legatees exactly what she thought of them as well as what they were getting." 2 comments
09/14/2010 page 267
35.0% "Now at the end of part one (1873-1884) and about to jump five years to part two (1889-1929). The writing goes a tad over the top at times but still a great read. Wish I had all day with this book."
09/14/2010 page 324
42.0% "Slowing down a bit but still good. With a long saga like this you anticipate the big historical events to come and apart from the fictional plot, that keeps you reading."
09/15/2010 page 332
43.0% "There's a great Jane Eyre/Rebecca theme being set up here - looking forward to seeing how it plays out."
09/16/2010 page 430
56.0% "Boardroom battle, which is great, but I'm puzzled over a twist in the plot. It's implied one of the characters is mistress to the Prince of Wales, then Queen Victoria dies and so the PoW can no longer bankroll her. Why? Edward VII had plenty of mistresses and I can't believe he was kept shorter as King than he was as Prince, so what difference would it make?"
09/17/2010 page 551
72.0% "Up to the First World War. A telegram arrives late in the evening, but Mary doesn't think it can be anything special. Really?"
09/18/2010 page 646
84.0% "In the home stretch. I want to finish this today if I can. Now following the fortunes of Claire, a journalist in the 1930s, but the book is annoying me by persisting on focusing on her love life and visits with her family rather than her career."

Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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message 1: by Misfit (new)

Misfit Hmmm, this looks interesting.

Moppet Misfit wrote: "Hmmm, this looks interesting."

I've only read the first two chapters, but I think this might be your cup of tea. I'll keep you posted.

message 3: by Misfit (last edited Sep 12, 2010 04:14PM) (new)

Misfit Goody. Library has it so I'm good to go. King County is sooooooo good.

Edit, looks like a movie was made on it. Library has the VHS but dagnabit my VCR decided to quit and not worth getting it fixed :-/

Gregory Peck and Greer Garson.

[image error]

message 4: by Jill (new)

Jill Misfit wrote: "Goody. Library has it so I'm good to go. King County is sooooooo good."

Yeah, yeah. Rub it in, Misfit.

message 5: by Misfit (new)

Misfit Oh wow, found the movie trailer. What a classic and don't miss that glimpse of a very young Jessica Tandy towards the end.

message 6: by Misfit (new)

Misfit Jill wrote: "Misfit wrote: "Goody. Library has it so I'm good to go. King County is sooooooo good."

Yeah, yeah. Rub it in, Misfit."



Moppet I lucked out with a lovely 1944 library copy. Only annoying thing is I would like to read the author's foreword in the reprint but this seems to be quite rare so I'm lucky to have found it at all.

The film looks good - hope I can rent it once I finish the book.

message 8: by Karla (new) - added it

Karla It's a great movie. Saw it on TCM years ago. I've been meaning to read the book for awhile.

message 9: by Misfit (new)

Misfit Awesome, I'll be looking for your review. I love big fat sagas.

message 10: by Laura (new)

Laura me too, me too....

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