Paperback review: Part of the Spell, By Rachel Heath
Saturday 03 August 2013
Rachel Heath begins in similar territory to Maggie O'Farrell's Instructions for a Heatwave, with an elderly parent who goes missing one day for no apparent reason, but she lacks O'Farrell's edge and psychological complexity.
Stella is a young mother in a small town who doesn't fit in with the newcomers, those wealthier London commuters whose wives make her feel uncomfortable at the local mother-and-baby group, yet who are also struggling to make sense of their own lives – as an anonymous blog by one of them, Tacita, whose husband has been having an unsatisfying affair, shows. There's a little too much revolving around house purchases and other middle-class dissatisfactions, concerns that are hard to make novelistically as urgent as they need to be, and Stella herself is a little too passive for a heroine.
Artists unveils new exhibition inspired by Hastings beachart
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Pro-Russian rebel 'admits to shooting down plane'
- 2 Louis van Gaal gets tough with Manchester United players, with Darren Fletcher and Luke Shaw berated in public and Phil Jones left looking bemused
- 3 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 4 Peaches Geldof inquest: Tragic final moments of socialite's life reveal she lied to husband about failed heroin tests
- 5 Israel has discovered that it's no longer so easy to get away with murder in the age of social media
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?
Hercules, review: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson takes centre stage in preposterous film
Fight Club 2: Chuck Palahniuk sequel is a 'meta-fictional comment on the cultural response to the original'
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash: 'Nine Britons, 23 Americans and 80 children' feared dead after Boeing passenger jet is 'shot down' near Ukraine-Russia border
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia