This review was written 27/2/09
Synopsis (from Amazon)
This is Trollope’s most detailed and concise study of middle-class life in a small provincial community – in this case Baslehurst, in the luscious Devon countryside. It is also a charming love-story, centring on sweet-natured Rachel Ray and her suitor Luke Rowan, whose battle to wrest control over Baslehurst’s brewery involves a host of typically Trollopian local characters.
Well what can I say? I did not enjoy this book, in fact I’m surprised that I didn’t give up before the end although I was tempted many times. There were the occasional sections which I, didn’t enjoy exactly but found somewhat engaging and that is part of what kept me going I think. By the end I did want to know how the characters would end up, which I suppose shows that I found the characters more engaging than I had realised while reading, or maybe it just shows that I was looking forward to resolution and the end .
Plot wise I didn’t find it particularly engaging. What I had expected to be the main plotline- that of Rachel and Luke’s romance although a central plot was not really seen so much as discussed. This was somewhat disappointing as possibly my favourite book moment was when we actually saw them together as a couple. The second main theme of the brewery I just found generally boring. I found the owner of the brewery stubbon to the point that I just wished he’d shut up and stop moaning.
The whole story I found rather dragged out, everything was written with more words and explaination than neccersary. Some discription is good but I found the ammount of discription gave a waffley element to the narative, paired with the usual language used in ‘classic’ novels it made reading a real effort, which I wouldn’t mind if it wasn’t for the fact that it really added nothing to my enjoyment.
Oh and the blurb said it was a comedy, maybe there was one point in the whole book which made me laugh! I have a feeling it was an observational comedy though and society is quite a lot different to how it was at the time when Trollope was writing.
I am not generally a classic reader. Which I suppose is part of what made me so determined to finish this one. This though is the first I have really not enjoyed of what I have read. I wouldn’t recommend it, and deffinatly not if you are not someone who usually reads classics.