Anika's Reviews > The Romantic

The Romantic by Barbara Gowdy
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's review
Sep 07, 2012

really liked it
Read from September 07 to 20, 2012

I read this book for the first time a couple of years ago and I loved it. I had - as always, it seems - expected something different. But that didn't stop me from loving the book. Then, a while ago, I felt the need to re-read it. No reason really. So I did. What is this book about? Love. With a capital 'L'. Re-reading it now, I think I spotted even more love than when I read it the first time. The first time I felt cheated by the unhappy ending between Abel and Louise. This time I did not. This time I noticed the "love" between Louise and her mother. Louise and her father, Mrs. Carver and of course Mrs. Richter. Those seemed much more important to me all of a sudden. Abel was something else, of course. But having re-read it now, I was annoyed by Abel. Moreso than the first time. I know he was sick, at least at the end, but he was also selfish. No matter how Louise saw him, to me he was selfish. Very selfish. In the end, the real sadness (but also happiness) comes from Louise's journey. Her mother leaves her, and just like that she falls in love with abel who will constantly leave and hurt her. Just like her mother. In the end both of them are dead. Louise has survived them both. I could be wrong, but I think she was happy at the end. Free, in a way, of those two influences.
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09/07/2012 page 37
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