Monday, September 04, 2006

It Might Have Been What He Said by Eden Collinsworth

Some authors are just witty and Eden Collinsworth a new addition to the witty author ranks. Reviews are comparing her to Jane Austin and Edith Wharton.

Featuring quirky modern day "upper crust" characters and views of their often chaotic and rule bound lifestyles, this was an engrossing first novel. While the prose isn't as elegant as some of the other novels I read this year who can resist sentences like the opening sentence: "Isabel could remember the precise moment she tried killing her husband. Strangely enough she couldn't recall why" and "If asked to justify himself, James would say he simply allowed Isabel to believe what she wanted..yes, it might have been the omission of truth; but no, it wasn't a lie."

This also gives you a pretty good summary of what the novel is about. The charming carefree spendthrift of a husband and Isabel's mad (as all love is to some degree) passionate love for him causes Isabel to become worn down with worry but what keeps her in love and supporting her beloved but difficult husband is the hope that he will change. When that hope is shattered by her husband's engagement to another woman her life starts to move in a very different direction as she drowns in grief and the beginning of madness. And yet in the end it is Isabel who escapes to live a life worth cherishing and it is James who is trapped into the destiny he was intended for, marrying money and saving the family estate.

This was a moving but disturbing novel that in a clear and direct way shows how the choices we make along the way lead us in directions we never intended to take.

To my world traveler friends, Spike says thank you for the lovely ribbon that came with the box of chocolates from Switerland. He loved it.

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