Friday, 27 July 2007

Motherhood and more

I've recently finished reading Sonia Lambert's first novel Three Mothers for a reading group - we are meeting the author in September, along with another reading group in our area. This was well-written, although I found the timeline, which kept jumping back and forward as the memories of the women were related, somewhat confusing. Not precisely enjoyable, as one of the themes is terminal illness, but well handled and interesting. A fairly accomplished book for a first novel.
Another recent read was Can any mother help me? by Jenna Bailey. Based on a collection of letters which formed a secret correspondance club, now housed in the Mass Observation archives. The letters were written as articles , then circulated by mail to the next reader. They make fascinating social history, and although when I started the book I had doubts about how interesting I would find it, I carried on and found myself gripped by the lives of these women, mostly of my mothers generation. The editing of the letters has been skillfully done, and there is sufficient biographical detail to give a picture of their individual circumstances. A fascinating book.
We are off to France at the weekend, so am hastily gathering reading matter for a week in the Auvergne, which seems to be as wet as here!

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