Tuesday, 28 June 2016

The Trouble with Alice by Olivia Glazebrook

The Trouble with Alice gets off to a gripping start that keeps you reading to the end. It is the story of a relationship, with Alice and Kit a couple just starting out when Alice discovers she’s pregnant. Kit is older, but not so much smarter, and a bit condescending: Why do we go out with these young girls? Kit asks his art dealer friend, but as you get to know Kit, he isn’t all that much more mature himself.

The story begins when Alice and Kit have a car accident while on holiday and events spiral downwards from there. Alice stops looking after herself and gets ill; Kit doesn’t know how to communicate with her or take care of her. Fortunately it’s family to the rescue: Kit’s difficult wheel-chair bound and constantly carping father; his mother is much kinder but there’s a schism in her relationship with her son.

The book charts Alice’s recovery and she and Kit have to do a lot of soul-searching and growing-up before there can be any resolution. It is a fairly simple story but what makes it interesting is the complex characters, the rich and varied settings and the quirky, fun dialogue. Humour bubbles through the pathos in a way that resembles Mary Wesley and Joanna Trollope. Terrific writing, sharp and wise.

Posted by JAM

Catalogue link: The Trouble with Alice

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