BOOK REVIEW / Paperbacks: Folly by Susan Minot, Minerva pounds 5.99

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This story of a woman 'in a garden with a fence too high to see over' masterfully evokes the suffocating world of New England gentility in the first part of the 20th century. Minot, whom the critics have compared with Jane Austen and Henry James, has fun playing with pastiche and melodrama; but deep down this short novel is wholly serious - and very depressing.