Sunday, July 13, 2008

Fault Lines

I appreciated the cleverness of the structure of this novel, managing to capture 4 such different stories into four generations of a family (and all still living) was clever.

But "vibrant, richly drawn and captivating"? No.

The central character, Erra, really didn't convince me. Yes, it was a fascinating insight to yet another Nazi atrocity (and of course it is an atrocity, I find the book unconvincing, I am not disputing the historical accuracy), but it was not enough to build a whole novel around.

The ruthless academic grandmother was more convincing but so dislikeable, the great grandson Sol was irritating beyond belief (though what a mother!). Only Randall rang true for me, a whole novel from Randall's point of view I would have found quite enjoyable.

Leaving aside the weaknesses in structure and character, I did find the novel very easy to read and I admired the style that stayed somehow consistent while still reading very definitely as four separate voices.

I would try another Nancy Huston but I am surprised to see this on the shortlist.

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