Thursday, 10 July 2008

Thinking woman's crumpet. Recent reading.

Here's Francesco da Mosto, Venetian count, architect and art historian. According to Cornflower, he's known as the thinking older woman's crumpet.
Too right. I'll be with him on his voyage around the Mediterranean on BBC2 every Tuesday evening.
Elaine of Random Jottings is besotted too apparently.

Recent reading:
I found The Private Lives of Pippa Lee by Rebecca Miller good in parts but, ultimately, for me, not that satisfying. Pippa is the perfect Stepford wife, now fifty, thirty years younger than her husband and, surprisingly, they have moved to a retirement village. So hard to imagine a fifty-year-old who would agree to this. The author's descriptions of the residents of the village were acute but depressing. It could be that the distant third person narrative was used in these early chapters to demonstrate Pippa's detachment from the world but the reader also feels detached.

In part 2, switching to first person narration, we read Pippa's back story as a wild teenager who seduces a married teacher, leaves home and becomes involved in drugs and worse. She meets Herb, the rich and powerful husband, who rescues her from all this and that's how she becomes Perfect Pippa. The chapters about young Pippa were lively, if repellent at times, but I kept falling asleep at the beginning and end of the book which is not a good sign.

I'd never go to sleep when Francesco is on TV, of course.


monix said...

My, Susie, you take no prisoners in your reviewing! (I'm glad I only write text books.) I shall leave all the books behind and join you, Elaine and most English women over 35 on the sofa to watch Francesco in the Mediterranean and there won't be a critical word from anyone.

Susie Vereker said...

Oh, but I don't write many negative reviews, Monix. Even then it's usually because I have been disappointed by a best-seller. I expect Pippa Lee has had good reviews elsewhere. She's an R&J choice and is going to be made into a film, so I expect she'll survive my lack of enthusiasm.

monix said...

I have to confess that I hadn't come across any of her books but your review had me googling away. I may not be tempted to read her books but at least I now know who she is and her family connections. There's no such thing as bad publicity, after all!

galant said...

Am I the only person left cold by the Italian count? Give me a good, old-fashioned Englishman any day!
Margaret Powling