Title: ”Edith & Oliver”
Author: Michele Forbes
Number of pages: 320
Received for review from Hachette UK.
From the author of Ghost Moth, one of the most acclaimed debuts of 2014, a stunning second novel which will put Michèle Forbes in the league of Colm Toíbín, Anne Enright and Sebastian Barry.
Edith was born into a different world. But her rebellious nature brought her to the seedy glamour of the music hall, where she plays the piano by night.
Oliver is an illusionist of moderate repute. But he is a man of ambition. He wants to tour the world, to pioneer ground-breaking illusions.
History and fate have other ideas.
When Edith and Oliver meet they fall headlong in love. But their children arrive as the world begins to change, as cinemas crowd the high street and the draw of the music hall wanes. What follows is a struggle: against the entropy of marriage, against the march of time, and against Oliver’s flaws-flaws that may cost them everything.
This book ended up being a DNF for me, which is sad since it was a book I was so looking forward to reading. I am very thankful though, for having received this book from Hachette UK ❤
I am very sorry for taking so long with this review, I haven’t posted a review in months (I believe ._. ) and it is so hard to get back on track with everything. Someone should just hand me the award for worst blogger of all time. Seriously. I suck at doing this, big time.
Now onto the review!
The book itself has a very promising premise, from the blurb it sounds like something that I would normally enjoy a lot. But the thing with historical fiction (and me) is that it might sound good and it could even be good in the beginning, but it can end up being a total flop really fast. I am just very sensitive (is that the right word?) towards historical fiction and the novels that I like in the genre.
This book was one that I didn’t enjoy. I started reading it as soon as I had it out of the package it was sent in and read it for a couple of days, and then things went south. I put the book aside and in no way felt inclined to pick it up again and continue reading it. The same thing happened when I tried to read it again during my summer vacation, I started from the beginning and then got about a hundred pages in… and just didn’t feel like reading on. To be honest the feeling to stop came much sooner than that.
I think the very problem that kept me from finishing and enjoying this was the writing style. There were things about the way the novel was written that didn’t click with me and made the story lose value in my eyes. Everything progressed really fast in the book and was in a way so half-heartedly written that the story felt incomplete and unfinished, sort of like a draft.
Besides the writing, the characters in the book were also ones I didn’t sympathize with. I didn’t like the characters, and if possible I liked them less than the writing style. There was no real depth there and I just… feel like it could have been more special, you know?
There are reviews for this book that are really positive and say that it is really good and I think my mistake was to trust just those few reviews that I read. This book does sound good and I don’t doubt there being people who like it and who will like it, it just wasn’t for me and I will now just set this book aside for the time being (that being probably forever). But who knows, maybe one day I’ll need a book to read and then I can take this off my shelf again.
Check the book out on Goodreads here.