Safae's Reviews > The Return of the Soldier

The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West
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's review
Dec 16, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: 1001, english, favorites

I've stopped reading books synopsis' a long time ago since some of them actually ruins the book for you , so i had absolutely no idea on what this book was about, i only started reading it since it is a recommendation from someone on "1001 books you must read before you die group" on goodreads, i complained about the difficulty i found on other books on the very same list, and she gave me a little piece of advice.
She was right, the book is easy on the language level , on the other hand i can't say the same about the emotions that this book brought me,they were hard, i stopped reading romances altogether because after a while they all started to seem to me dull and repeated , but this one, this one made me believe once again in love and in tragedy, it made me realize that i am a romantic after all, i just don't like ordinary and cheap romances , i like the hard , enduring and non physical ones.
I felt so many different kind of love in this book, The love Jenny has for Chris , an innocent and brotherly kind of love, that could make you think of your sisters, it is the kind of love that lasts forever of course, but it's not consuming and deadly and maybe not even wonderful, it's just more natural than other kinds of love and easier too.
I don't think Kitty loves Chris as much as she needs him for her image, she needs someone she can count on, she is not the giving kind, and she is selfish and immoral , and once again we can see how physically beautiful people are presented as evil ones, because they relay so much on their beauty that there is no place left for personality, and it's not their fault alone , it's mostly the fault of society of people so blinded by beauty .
Margaret's love is unconditional and eternal, she kept it buried in her heart all those years, and the last sacrifice she made was the sign that she was worthy of love more than anyone else in this book, it showed us also how unselfish she is, she is quite the opposite of kitty , she is not physically beautiful , but her soul made her seem like a queen of beauty to me.
Chris, there are two of Chris, Chris the one who loves Margaret , and Chris the soldier, an amnesia made Chris forget all about his recent life, so i'm not sure if he truly still loves Margaret or if it just a refuge of his mind to a time when he was the happiest, and his love is unconditional as well he loves Margaret regardless of how she looks, his soul is attached to her in the purest and most magical way.
in this book you can FEEL more than anything else, i would consider from now on this book as the father of all romances , and the most tragic one.
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Quotes Safae Liked

Rebecca West
“Embraces do not matter; they merely indicate the will to love and may as well be followed by defeat as victory. But disregard means that now there needs to be no straining of the eyes, no stretching forth of the hands, no pressing of the lips, because theirs is such a union that they are no longer aware of the division of their flesh.”
Rebecca West, The Return of the Soldier

Reading Progress

December 16, 2011 – Started Reading
December 16, 2011 – Shelved
December 16, 2011 – Shelved as: 1001
December 16, 2011 –
page 54
48.21% "right now i'm so loving it..."
December 18, 2011 – Finished Reading
January 29, 2013 – Shelved as: english
July 15, 2016 – Shelved as: favorites

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