Saturday, 22 June 2013

Just Finished Reading: The Piano Teacher

Scary Secretary surprised herself on our recent holiday as, in spite of having a six year old who demands attention a lot of the time, she finished a novel.  So, my sneaky plan to get rid of the kids by choosing a place where they couldn't resist off and playing  did the trick!   I myself got through a rather acceptable two and a half novels.

My tally might have been more had I not picked  Marian Keye's Anybody Out There?.  Now this Irish author's yarns often make it onto my holiday reading shortlist.  My gripe though is that they're so, so lengthy, a  verbosity that  doesn't add anything to stories that might  easily be told in half the word count.  But these books are like cocaine and no doubt my uncontrolled addiction means that  I'll whisk another off as holiday reading sometime in the near future.

There followed David Nicholl's One Day, a story for my own generation that I found gripping.  That is  until I reached the end where I deemed the final part of the plot to be a right royal predictable cop out.   Scary Secretary has read it since and disagreed with my point of view.  You'll have to read it yourself to decide who's right.

What disappointed me at school was that there was no scope after GCE O-Level to go on and do a composition A-level.  You had to choose to study literature if you wanted to carry on with English.  I've never been one for navel gazing analysis of stories, particularly ones like The Canterbury Tales that I didn't appeal in the first place.  As such my book reviews will never be detailed and in depth.  I pop down to Amazon to see what other people have said. for help.   This was the case with my final holiday read The Piano Teacher by Janice YK Lee.  It wasn't polished off until I was back in Blighty.  

What I enjoyed about this book was its fascinating portrayal of life in wartime Hong Kong.  I had no idea that it had been occupied but then again I gave up studying history,  at the drop of a hat too.    The plot about one man's love affair during and after the war was  entirely satisfactory.   I like a bit of romance!  There was something though that I wasn't too  happy about that I couldn't put my finger on. One of those one star reviewers, who'd no doubt paid more attention in literature classes,  helped me hit the nail on the head.  The characters were too wooden and implausible. There wasn't one I liked!

1 comment:

  1. I've always meant to read One Day so I've gone straight through your link onto Amazon and got a sample sent to my Kindle. I'm looking forward to reading it. I haven't seen the film because my other half just wouldn't put up with the film on while he was in the house! I would have to watch it in the middle of the night!
    I need a cinema buddy to go and watch girls' films with.
    I'll let you know what I think about One Day. I do like reviewing books so watch out for a quite lengthy review!
    How on earth do you manage to read so many books with all the other things that you do? I generally dip in and out of books so I might be reading two or three at the same time, mostly on the Kindle.