The American Lover PDF/EPUB ↠ The American PDF \

The American Lover Period PiecesRose Tremain has written modern books as well but she is probably best known as an historical novelist with novels such as Restoration and Music Silence both 17th century and The Colour 19th century Most of the 13 stories in this collection are also period pieces in the sense of being specific to a particular time but in most cases they are periods that the author herself would have lived through born as she was in 1943 The title story for example is about a young Englishwoman who falls for an American in 1964 is abandoned and writes a best selling novel about him The longish Lucy and Gaston is a beautifully constructed story about the death of a pilot in WW2 about the age to have been Tremain's own father told simultaneously in two countries England and France and two time periods 1944 and 1976 There are two uite short stories about girls sent off to boarding school Extra Geography tells of a friendship between two girls that is at first cemented and then destroyed by a crush on a stylish teacher; even better The Closing Door explores the feelings of mothers after the school train bears their only children awayEven the modern stories depend on period The clever but relatively slight BlackBerry Winter hangs upon the use of that device which pretty much ties it to the first decade of the century The last story 21st Century Juliet is eually determinedly now Juliet has to marry the Hon Peregrine Paris if her father who has been burned in the recession is not to sell Capell Court the family home Another longish story A View of Lake Superior in the Fall is clearly dated 2000 but it is detached from the present less by period than by place being set on a remote Canadian island But it is also a period piece emotionally in that it features two elderly people looking back at their difficulties raising their restless daughter; in that sense it is a kind of projection of the mother in The Closing Door fifty years into the futureTwo of the longer stories however are set before Tremain's own lifetime; both as it happens have literary connections The Jester of Astapovo tells of the death of Leo Tolstoy at a rural railway station in 1910 taken ill while running away from his wife Although it says nothing that Jay Parini did not develop at greater length in his novel The Last Station it is given a particular twist by being narrated by the station master who is having marital troubles of his own Tremain's fondness for looking at major events through the eyes of minor characters has been noted before in her novels She does it again in The Housekeeper the account by a Jewish immigrant Mrs Danowski working as the housekeeper to Lord de Whithers at Manderville Hall telling of her passionate relationship with a visiting author Daphne du Maurier and her sense of betrayal when she realizes that she has been turned into the villain of the novel RebeccaNone the these stories hit me viscerally But some such as Lake Superior and Lucy and Gaston were uietly moving And all of them at some deep level had the air of truth—perhaps because of Tremain's willingness to let the endings hang in the air and not tie things up too neatly And they are wonderfully varied in range So not uite a five star rating but certainly a high four This is the second book by Tremain that I've read but I didn't really enjoy this collection of short stories Of the collection the title story and 'Lucy and Gaston' were probably my favourites but I didn't really connect with most of the othersPerhaps it's because I prefer the novel to the short story form or perhaps it was just the subject matter covered but I'll not be rushing back to read much of Tremain's work on the back of this one I’m not a great fan of the short story much preferring the depth and involvement in character and plot that you get from a novel but this new collection from Rose Tremain whose novels I’ve always read with pleasure did in fact supply me with that depth and involvement each one being a complete world in itself conjuring up a whole life in just a few pages It’s also rare I find to have a collection of stories in which all of them are eually engaging – and in this instance moving Tremain’s subject matter is varied but all the stories are to do with the vagaries of the human heart They’re about love and loss and longing and those turning points the pivotal moments in life when everything can change for ever Snapshots but memorable ones showing insight and understanding compassion and empathy A very enjoyable and well written collection Upgrading this lovely collection to 4 upon reflection Not every story was for the ages 21st Century Juliet while very engaging and sometimes funny didn't uite work in the end but many stuck with me for their elegant craftsmanship and an almost old fashioned clarity and maturity I loved The Housekeeper Mrs Danvers speaks the titular The American Lover and the haunting A View of Lake Superior in the Fall Juliet Stevenson is my favorite audiobook narrator ever but she is joined here by a talented group of fellow narrators they take turns with different stories Highly recommended for short story fans And The Housekeeper is a must read for all DuMaurier fans Rose Tremain awakens the senses in this magnificent and diverse collection of short storiesTrapped in a London apartment Beth remembers a transgressive love affair in 1960s Paris The most famous writer in Russia takes his last breath in a stationmaster's cottage miles from Moscow A young woman who is about to marry a rich aristocrat instead begins a torrid relationship with a construction worker A father finally free of his daughter's demands embarks on a long swim from his Canadian lakeside retreat A middle aged woman cares for her injured mother at Christmas And in the grandest house of all Danni the Polish housekeeper catches the eye of an enigmatic visitor Daphne du Maurier Stunningly heart wrenching beautiful uncomfortable poignant and way too short More please I somehow think she and Sylvia Plath would have gotten on well with Rose Tremain pestering Sylvia to stop belly aching listen to THIS story And they trade their stories back and forth all night over cheap wine and excellent weed and wake up themselves again view spoiler Bettie's Books hide spoiler Not a short story I did not enjoy reading all of them make you ponder and think about life The stories include one where Tolstoy comes to die in a place called Apostavo and The Housekeeper Mrs Danvers in Rebecca has an affair with Du Maurier herself They capture the human element of love grief marriage relationships and friendship so well and are so relatable Tremain doesn't mince her words and her stories are complete but you still want A real skill to have I love Rose Tremain's writing but I also like a story to get my teeth and brain into Silly me didn't realise this was a collection of short stories which I avoid like the plague well written as they may be These stories were like most well written short stories; Ie the ending didn't happen and my frustration soared with each story But I must say I enjoyed them anyway Sigh Rose Tremain is a name I have heard so often but never had the chance to read on of her books; in fact her name is familiar but I couldn’t tell you anything about her books She has published thirteen novels including The Road Home which won the Orange Prize in 2008 and Music and Silence winner of the Whitbread award in 1999 She taught creative writing at the University of East Anglia until she was appointed chancellor in 2013 and she is married to Romantic biographer Richard Holmes not that her marriage affects her writing just an interesting fact She has also written five collections of short stories including her latest The American LoverWhile I sometimes struggle to read and review short story collections I still wish to talk about them just so I have a record I picked up The American Lover because it mentioned a story about a famous Russian writer’s story was inspired by Tolstoy’s life final days living in a stationmaster’s cottage outside of Moscow As most people know I am a fan of Russian literature and books about Russia itself When I looked at the author’s name I was excited even it was a chance to finally dip into the writing style of Rose TremainWithout going into all the stories within the book Tremain goes into some very interesting topics from transgressive love sex reflections of life and even a very unusual story about Daphne du Maurier What I found in this collection is that Rose Tremain has a great ability to create characters and express emotions There are some brilliantly dark and sometimes comical moments the she masterfully crafted into her stories She has produced a collection centred around so many different emotions and skilfully managed to fit them into such short storiesI really love the characters and emotions expressed in these stories and really makes me want to experience Rose Tremain’s style in long form However I am not sure which novel to start with and would love some recommendations The American Lover was a brilliant way to dip into Tremain’s writing and I am so glad to have finally had a chance to do so If her writing abilities work just as well in her novels she may have found a new fanThis review originally appeared on my blog;


About the Author: Rose Tremain

Rose Tremain's best selling novels have won many awards including the Baileys Women's Prize the Whitbread Novel of the Year the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Prix Femina Etranger Restoration the first of her novels to feature Robert Merivel was shortlisted for the Booker Prize She lives in Norfolk and London with the biographer Richard Holmes


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