Thursday 5 June 2014

Apologies for a belated BOOK CLUB BOOK REVIEW: Apple Tree Yard (Louise Doughty)

My goodness! What’s happening? Nothing since March and then I go a write two in one day. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: blog posts are like buses. Well, mine are anyway.

This is a partial review. It’s more like a letter to explain why it’s not a review. Of the dog-ate-it variety.

You see, the thing about writing a book blog is that you really need to read books. Ordinarily this is not a problem for me. However, of late, I’ve been using the little bit of me-time I have before I go to sleep to do something other than reading. Never fear, this is not going to be too gratuitous. Although it does involve YouTube.

Yes, I’ve discovered the delights of watching short videos on the iPad of people doing all sorts of fascinating things like furniture restoring, cooking and cake icing. It’s my new guilty pleasure. But it is rather getting in the way of my reading schedule.

For far too long this site has declared that our book club is currently reading Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty. It’s not, we read it ages ago. We’re now reading The Dinner by Herman Koch...or some of us are I imagine.

Anyway, since it’s such a long time since we read and discussed Apple Tree Yard, my analysis here will not be up to much, but let me just say that it was excellent, we all thoroughly enjoyed it, and @claireeah is now a strong contender for the Best Book coaster, since it was her choice.

Here goes:

Yvonne Carmichael has worked hard to achieve the life she always wanted: a high-flying career in genetics, a beautiful home, a good relationship with her husband and their two grown-up children. Then one day she meets a stranger at the Houses of Parliament and, on impulse, begins a passionate affair with him – a decision that will put everything she values at risk.

At first she believes she can keep the relationship separate from the rest of her life, but she can’t control what happens next. All of her careful plans spiral into greater deceit and, eventually, a life-changing act of violence.

We all found this a gripping page-turner and very difficult to put down. The fact that the central character was a scientist appealed to the scientists and non-scientists alike in our group.
Essentially a courtroom drama, the tension was almost unbearable as it built to the climax of the story, but we did find the crucial piece of evidence the case hinged on seemed in truth a little bit weak.

All in all though, this is an excellent read that keeps you guessing right till the very end, and thinking long after the last page.

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