From suspenseful reads to literary tweeds…
I am not going to tell you how it ends. The Little Stranger will pull you in, sit you down and have you reading late into the night. I read this book on a holiday and my boyfriend, an avid holiday reader, kept stealing it from me. So, he would read it in the morning, and I would read it in the afternoon. He defended himself by saying it was good; after all, it was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize and was the New York Times Notable Book of 2009. He is a swift reader and did not tell me how it ended but only gave me a shrug. Surprising, after he had grabbed the novel every time I had left my poolside chair for only a moment. I felt the same way when I finished. Unfortunately, the ending disappoints and is far-fetched.
Sarah Waters is a wonderful creator of characters and their inner psychological conflicts. The doctor is almost as lonely as Hundreds Hall, an old mansion in England possessing many secrets. You will enjoy this book if you like good British ghost stories. The interplay between the characters drives the story forward: the charming old widow, the son carrying ill memories of the war, the responsible yet suffocated daughter, and the doctor who becomes personally involved in their lives.
The house itself decays as the family does and parallels the death of one way of life replaced by the modernization of the surrounding community. The characters peel off their guises as the wallpaper peels off the house.
Is there a ghost or is it all in their heads? Science and logic battle inner demons.
I am going to read more of Sarah Waters, and you should still read this book. I would have rated it higher if I had liked the ending.