Sunday, 20 June 2010

Just finished reading: State of the Union

There's a great new stall in the waiting area where I work that sells books for a donation of £1 to the hospital's charity.   State of the Union caught my eye as I was browsing on the way through to my office one day, maybe because of the quote on the back cover from a Daily Mirror reviewer 'Kennedy is a complete genius when it comes to understanding the minds of stylish but troubled women.  What's more, he does so entrallingly and movingly'!  I've checked out a picture of the author on Amazon where he's looking a bit like the Fonz which might be why he understands us 'lay-dees' so well . Just click on the book at the top of the post to see what I mean.

The book spans the time period between the sixties and the current day, telling how the consequences of one 'mistake' in a woman's life when she was young has countless ramifications years later.  It's a long read of nearly six hundred pages, which was started at the tail end of my holiday.  So the question 'Was it worth two weeks of my life?' must be posed.

The book is indeed a page turner and mainly gripping although I found myself skipping bits of narrative a few times.  I enjoyed the story hugely but that didn't find me thinking how implausible it was in both detail and overall plot.  For example, without giving too much away, a body is discovered (in the right place) wearing the same eye-wateringly priced designer necklace as a missing person in the book. She then turns up months later waitressing in Canada.    I'm also not sure that the book earns Mr Kennedy the title of  'Chief Lady Empathiser' as the Daily Mirror critic suggests.  Perhaps he needs a go at getting into my psyche to earn this accolade but perhaps I'm not sophisicated or screwy enough.

For a holiday read this is great and would be welcome when delayed at an airport for hours. And I'm not ruling out reading any of the author's other books, but not at a time when I want a serious read.

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