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Sunday, May 30, 2010

2 Mini Reviews of old favourites and a review of a new book!

Two of the books I am reviewing have been done over and over again and in a much better style than I ever could do so I will just leave it at mini reviews for those two.

The Finishing School - Muriel Spark. My first read of Muriel Spark after all the blogging comments I have read re this author. I was very disappointed at the beginning as the book was not available at the library and would become available long after I had left. However, by some
miracle three of her books were returned and I took all three.

The Finishing School deals with a little school in Switzerland run by a husband a wife duo. The interest lies in a student Chris who is writing a novel and at the same time a novel is being written (or rather being desperately tried to be written ) by Rowland the husband of the college running duo. The story deals with the very human failings of envy and jealousy which can eat into one when one party is suceessful and where the future looks so bright and promising and whereas the other party is on a slippery slope. Dealing with such emotions the book will appeal to most people as these are common traits which I think none of us are proud of!

The second Muriel Spark was The Drivers Seat - I was and still am a bit fuddled by what the writer is trying to tell me in this story. I never could get quite to grips with what was happening. Lise after sixteen years of work in the same office leaves everything and seems to be so distracted that she is driven to destruction of herself mainly whilst disrupting everything around her. A rather confusing book for me that is.

The book I really liked and which I have not read about amongst all our book bloggers was
Family Reunion by Carol Smith. Encompassing four generations of a widespread clan covering America, England and France it showed the similarity and disparity in families - the book covers the importance of family ties, and the saying blood is thicker than water is amply shown in the book. It also shows family secrets hidden for two generations and how the ultimate betrayal at the very end brings out the secret so well hidden but also shows how strong the family is on the whole and also how clannish we can be when put against the wall. A very interesting, chatty style of writing, appealing and natural. I am glad I picked this book up from the library.

Today I am visiting the Titanic Exhibition at the Melbourne museum. I am looking forward to this very much as this kind of exhibition will be very unlikely to come to my own country. I was glad that I also visited the National Gallery of Victoria where a Renaissance exhibition of mainly Flemish and a couple of English painters was on. It was a real treat and I am so glad that my brother insisted that I should visit. I still maintain that those who have these opportunities never seem to realize what they have.!

Still chilly here!

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