I totally adored this book and was sad to see it come to an end. It's not very often that a book will really make me think to the extent that this one did, not only whilst I was reading it, but for quite some time afterwards.
It's hard to give you an outline of this story without giving too much away really, as right from the beginning this wonderful novel beautifully illustrates the characters and throws you right into the middle of a compelling story line that unfolds with perfection. The arrival of a letter that is addressed to Harold, our protagonist, is the event that changes so many things. Harold realises so much about himself, his marriage and his past, and sets about to try and make a shift, to take a trip to the heart of who he is, and attracts the sort of attention that he has never known before. The dialogue reads in quite a light and relatable fashion, and it may take a little time for the reader to realise the depths of human consciousness that are being dealt with here.
This is a tale of relationships, human nature, being haunted by the past, living a life full of regret, taking leaps of faith and how the sins of the fathers are sometimes passed onto and paid for by the sons. Very often it made me forget that the characters in this book were not actually real (although I get a feeling Miss Joyce does draw on personal experience to a certain degree), and I was often moved to tears and sometimes left feeling frustrated by the actions of them. Why this has not been made into a feature film or television drama as yet is anyone's guess. I hope that changes some day soon.
I highly recommend this book to all, but especially to those who live for devouring books like I do. Grab some snacks and drinks, and find yourself a comfy corner with plenty of cushions and a snuggly blanket....oh, and don't forget the tissues! You're going to need them!
PUBLISHER ~ BLACK SWAN
GENRE ~ FICTION
ISBN ~ 978-0-552-77809-1