Saturday, March 1, 2014

Amy's Review: Relative Love by Amanda Brookfield

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The Harrison family gathers as usual for Christmas in their big Sussex house - a tight safe world of festivity and family ritual. This year, however, outside realities are pressing hard: Pamela and John, married for four decades, know that time is catching up with them. And trouble is brewing in the lives of their four children. Cassie, the cossetted youngest, is in the throes of an affair with a married man; Elizabeth, her awkward older sister, is struggling with a faltering second marriage; Peter, the eldest and designated inheritor of Ashley House, is beginning to meet resistance to such a prospect from his career-orientated wife. Only Charlie, the charming and carefree younger son, and his wife Serena, seem truly content, with nothing to worry about except their adolescent twin girls and the simpler teething troubles of their toddler. 

Everywhere the scent of change is in the air. Yet, change, when it comes, strikes in the form of a tragedy of the most unforeseeable and devastating kind. The family, so apparently secure, begins to unravel.And secrets, past and present, are exposed, laying bare the fragility of human happiness and the myriad faces of love in an imperfect world.
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Amanda BrookfieldAbout the author:  (website): I have two elder sisters and a twin brother who is much quieter than me and with much longer legs. Our Dad was in the Foreign Office so we spent our childhood living in far-flung places like Shanghai and Stockholm. In fact, until the age of 32 I had never spent more than 3 years under the same roof...it's left me with the opposite of 'itchy feet'.

I fell in love with writing aged 11 when my class was asked to write a ghost story - that thrill of being able to make it all up! Studying English at Oxford was a dream come true, but then real life got in the way and I started a career in advertising, climbing the greasy pole for four years, helping sell washing powder and cold remedies.
Aged 25, I got the chance to go and live in Argentina. I left advertising, set myself up as a freelance journalist and wrote my first novel,'Alice Alone' which was published (to critical acclaim!) in 1989. I haven't stopped,or looked back, since. 

I am now published by Penguin. At the last count I had produced fifteen novels and two sons. There will be no more offspring, but lots of books I hope.



This book is about The Harris family and one year out of their lives.  Everyone in the family struggles with problems or secrets.  When the problems and the secrets are revealed their lives start to unravel and lives are disrrupted.  I thought this book started a bitvlittle slow, but soon I felt like I was part of the Harris family.  I liked how the author dedicated a chapter to every month of the year.  And I loved how the author centered the book around the house that has been in the family for many generations.  I also loved the cover.  I give this a 4 star review.



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