January 17, 2011

The Past and Other Lies - Maggie Joel


Never fear, I am still reading my way through A Suitable Boy. I was just suffering through a head cold over the weekend and was in need of some quick comfort reading.

I had read Joel's latest book, The Second Last Woman in England last year and while there had been some flaws in the storytelling for me I had still found it compelling and quite addictive reading.

I found Joel's earlier book, The Past and Other Lies just as compelling and addictive and it definitely helped me get my mind off my cold!

The book is about 3 pairs of sisters from 3 generations of one English family. The youngest pair of sisters, Jennifer and Charlotte are in their teens in the 1980's and are experiencing things that can typically occur at that stage of life - relationships, family conflict, school dramas and their connection as sisters and sometimes friends/enemies. The book starts with quite a confronting incident that in some way sets the tone for the rest of the book. The book crosses through time periods to focus on Jennifer and Charlotte's mother and her sister and on their grandmother and her sister.

As the title of the book suggests it portrays some of the stories that become part of a families history and how these stories can come from different viewpoints and experiences.

This book was quick and easy to read and the narrative was strong and kept the story flowing. Some of the scenes and events in the book didn't always ring true and it was as though they were being placed there to suit the author's purpose rather than because they flowed from the action of the story - but this didn't stop this from being a fun read for me.

5 comments:

Constance Reader said...

This book sounds totally intriguing...I've got to read it, now!

Thanks for the review. :)

Karen said...

Hi Constance Reader - I hope you enjoy it!

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