Family History

Family History Evelyn aged thirty nine is an attractive widow living an irreproachable life Then she meets Miles fifteen years her junior and falls passionately in love But both lovers have strong personalities

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  • Title: Family History
  • Author: Vita Sackville-West
  • ISBN: 9780860685975
  • Page: 225
  • Format: Paperback
  • Evelyn, aged thirty nine, is an attractive widow living an irreproachable life Then she meets Miles, fifteen years her junior, and falls passionately in love But both lovers have strong personalities and passion does not equal happiness Evelyn, deeply jealous and conventional is shocked at her lover s casual ways and his insistence on working all day Miles s love for EEvelyn, aged thirty nine, is an attractive widow living an irreproachable life Then she meets Miles, fifteen years her junior, and falls passionately in love But both lovers have strong personalities and passion does not equal happiness Evelyn, deeply jealous and conventional is shocked at her lover s casual ways and his insistence on working all day Miles s love for Evelyn is real but he cannot devote himself wholly to her whims Vita Sackville West collides attitudes to work, sex and society in the changing world of the early 1930s.

    One thought on “Family History”

    1. It seems that at one time this novel by Vita Sackville West was fairly neglected, and apparently even Vita herself wrote of it quite disparagingly. However as well as being a really good story – it a wonderful 1930’s exploration of the complexities of family life, relationships and society in an England on the brink of great change. West also seems to have quite a bit to say about love in this novel, romantic love, obsessional love of people and places and the difficulties when the lovers ar [...]

    2. Not a whole lot of interest in this book - very much a psychological romance plot with some commentary on pre-WWII English class structures. First part of the book employs a rather interesting episodic narrative technique which is abandoned later on. Not sure about the wisdom of spoiling your ending in the table of contents

    3. 1932 [by Hogarth Press]I'm glad Rosemary lent me this to read. The author wrote more novels than I realized she had [I have not read others], and this is not her most popular one, I believe. [All Passion Spent, and perhaps The Edwardians]The writing is fluent, reads easily. The characters are drawn in such a cerebral way that it's a little like reading a polemical text rather than fiction. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I'm not sure I would want to read other of her novels with any urgency."Mi [...]

    4. I didn't really expect to like this.I bought it on a whim because the German title (a woman of fourty) made me laugh as I turn 40 this year. I also thought it would get a chuckle from my mom.I'd never read a novel by Sackville-West, so I wasn't sure what to expect. It flowed nicely, and I got used to the multitude of POV's in this.I don't think I further want to ponder the moral of the ending of the novel and I do have to keep reminding myself of when it was written.But yeah, not a chore at all. [...]

    5. Sackville-West's book works as a sort of time-machine that takes us into the life of upper-class socialite Evelyn Jarrold in 1930s England. For more in-depth information and observations, check out my blog post about the book right here: outsideofacat.wordpress/2016/04/07/portraits-out-of-focus-family-history/

    6. I think this is my favourite Vita S-W novel. I read it several years ago and again just now. I just love the depiction of love. It's so masterful, cleanly drawn and intense without being the least bit smutty. The characters as well are deftly carved out, a fascinating time in history - between the wars, between classes, things changing, traditions, etc. I love the way she can show the strenghths and weaknesses of 'family values' -how they can stifle but also protect and carry you. I cried at the [...]

    7. Or maybe three and a half? Not sure I went for that ending, positively Victorian But up to then, pretty good.

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