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Thursday, 01 February 2018

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Harriet

This is a brilliant review of a book I didn't take to at all - in fact gave up about a third through. Clearly I missed all this so I'm glad you were there to point it out to me.

Faye

I completely share Harriet's view, Helen. I wasn't at all a fan but this great review makes me think there was an awful lot of cleverness in the book that I missed or was too grumpy to see! Sofia just wound me up so much; she was frustratingly passive and when she did do things, she made such poor decisions. Ooh - it just occurs to me that this is our discussion about how we react to characters' bad decisions again! Clearly I can't forgive everyone a bit of poor judgement...

Helen

Thank you both!

Actually I identified a bit with Sofia, maybe that's why I enjoyed the novel more! And I didn't think that her decisions were so bad, really :0 although I don't know how she remained so calm with her father. He was an unmitigated pain in the neck.

The prose is very deadpan though, I found it could be quite offputting and distancing, and I don't think it would have worked in a longer novel.

There seemed to be so much there, I thought about boring on for longer but didn't. One odd thing was that near the end of the book, there's a chapter in which Sofia has a piece of glass embedded in her face, and Juan removes it. It's only a chapter or so later that the scene in which the piece of glass gets stuck in her face actually occurs. I can't believe that was a mistake on the part of the author, but I don't know how to reconcile that with the rest of the narrative, which seemed to be linear. Does anyone have any ideas?

Faye

I have NO idea - that does seem odd and I didn't notice it at all. And if I did, I probably just assumed I'd missed something earlier. Excellent spot! And sorry I can't shed any light on it...

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