Literary reviews by Tim Love.
Warning: Rather than reviews, these are often notes in preparation for reviews that were never finished, or pleas for help with understanding pieces. See Litref Reviews - a rationale for details.

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

"A very private life" by Michael Frayn (Faber and Faber, 2005)

It was first published in 1998.

By p.39 I'd twice considered giving up, but given that it's only 132 pages in total, I battled on. I shouldn't have. I can't really see what audience would appreciate it. SF readers certainly wouldn't, nor would readers of satire, or 1984, etc. Maybe it's YA? I don't know. Here are some quotes

  • "Once upon a time there will be a little girl called Uncumber" (p.3, the first line)
  • "They discuss Noli up and they discuss him down, and the conclusion they reach is that he's a charlatan and a layabout and a womanizer and really just a little boy at heart - unless it was the price of food that the surprised queen was talking about all the time.
    Uncumber feels greatly cheered and lightened by this heart-to-heart talk. She says good-bye to the surprised queen, and without a word to anyone else she starts off to walk to the rocketport
    " (p.100)
  • "She realizes, with dreadful suddenness and finality, the truth about her situation: once you've got outside the inside world, you can never get back in!" (p.107)
  • "Nowadays people are tending to give up having children altogether and to stake their little claim upon immortality simply by living forever instead. It was the tyranny of the parent-child and child-parent relationships which so intolerably violated the privacy of child and parent alike" (p.129)

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