Mara's Reviews > Another Life Altogether

Another Life Altogether by Elaine Beale
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's review
Mar 13, 2010

liked it
bookshelves: british, family, historical-fiction, glbtq, mental-illness, mothers-motherhood, suicide, arc

I give this book 3 stars because the language itself is quite lovely. The story, on the other hand, leaves something to be desired. Jesse is a fairly standard teenage-girl-who-finally-learns-to-stand-up-for-herself-and-for-what's-right. She's a sympathetic character, but not a very interesting one. She seems like a dynamic character only because all the others are flat as pancakes (her parents don't so much grow as characters as just randomly start acting differently toward the end). Ultimately, though, it's hard to feel too much for Jesse, because she doesn't respond to her predicament in a believable way.

The story is set in a small town in northern England in the mid-70s (complete with some great descriptions of the clothes) and for that time and place, and what we know of her upbringing, Jesse takes her "predicament" far too easily in stride. We see very little internal struggle with her situation; the only real conflict in the story is how long she'll let things drag on. This does not make for very captivating reading.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
February 22, 2010 – Finished Reading
March 13, 2010 – Shelved
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: british
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: family
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: historical-fiction
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: glbtq
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: mental-illness
March 13, 2010 – Shelved as: mothers-motherhood
March 30, 2011 – Shelved as: suicide
November 14, 2017 – Shelved as: arc

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