Josephine's Reviews > The Beach House

The Beach House by Jane Green
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's review
Jan 18, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: read-in-2011, borrowed-from-helen

Chick lit isn’t usually my thing. I’m not a literary snob or anything, it’s just that there are so many clever well written books out there that I don’t really want to waste my valuable reading time on what can often be total fluff. Ok, perhaps I am a literary snob. Oh dear. This book though, by Jane Green, perfectly illustrates why. I didn’t hate it but mostly it was irritating. This is why:
The first half of the book was spent destroying the relationships of the main characters, none of whom with the exception of one or two,were likeable enough for me to feel any sympathy towards, although the epic breakdown of marriages everywhere was rather depressing. Even once the group assemble at the beach house it’s all rather poorly executed.
It’s so obvious that the utterly vile Michael is going to end up with Daff, who is so sympathetic to his plight – thinking he’s gotten his boss and friend of 20 years’ wife pregnant – even though she has been the victim of such treatment.
It’s so obvious that Daniel is going to end up with Matt the gardener, the first gay man he meets. The clichés in that make me want to vomit. These two fall in love within days of meeting, not because they have things in common, or because they get to know each other but because they’re gay. & then, they are one of the only couples who gets a happy ever after, but only after the newly gay Daniel has spent a year shagging around, and discussing said shagging around with Matt on the telephone. I mean seriously?
There’s no real development, either of story or character. There’s no effort to make the characters likeable and several of them are totally interchangeable. I had no idea for most of the book who was the cheated on wife and who was the gay-husband wife! It’s written in present tense, which is fine in some situations but just doesn’t work here, at all, and Green hops from narrative voice quicker than you can blink making it hard to read.

And that really does sound like I hate it doesn’t it! Thing is, I didn’t. I read it from start to finish over three evenings, I liked a couple of the characters (Nan, and Daniel) and it even made me smile a couple of times. It was ok and it was easy to read and it was fun. Whilst I shan’t go rushing out at the first opportunity to purchase Jane Green’s entire back catalogue, if another of her novels landed on my bookshelf I’d probably read it.

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Reading Progress

January 18, 2011 – Started Reading
January 18, 2011 – Shelved
January 19, 2011 –
page 158
January 20, 2011 – Shelved as: read-in-2011
January 20, 2011 – Finished Reading
June 7, 2011 – Shelved as: borrowed-from-helen

Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

Helen I have another 3!!!! ;o)

message 2: by TwoDrinks (new)

TwoDrinks Shan't waste precious moments of my life reading this!

Josephine Sarah, don't! Really, don't!

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