Monday, January 16, 2012

Woman in Red

Woman in Red
by Eileen Goudge

I'm a bit behind on blogging my reviews of books I've read and therefore I doubt I can do them justice, based on my short memory.

Note to self:  write review before starting next book!

Woman in Red tells the story of a woman released from prison and trying to resume her life in a small town on an island in Washington.  Nothing is the same when she returns to her home town.  She's now divorced, her son is reluctant to be with her and effort is being made by some citizens to force her to leave.  She becomes friends with a man who comes to the island to take over his grandfather's estate, the home of the artist of the mysterious painting of the woman in red.

The story is told in the past and the present.  The grandfather, and the woman's grandmother (who is the woman portrayed in the painting) resided on the island during the war.  Despite the remoteness of the island it did not remain untouched by the fears and hatred of the distant war.  Times were hard and for some, even harder when the war was over.

A story of unrequited love tenderly unfolds that lasts throughout the lifetimes unfulfilled.  As a reader I was anxious for the present day couple to discover it and in the end, wanted the story to go on just a bit longer to read of their reactions.

I lived for a short period of time in the islands that this story is placed in.  Most of the details were fictionalized as was the island and the town.  The start of the ferry route to the island was real, however as was a particular book store mentioned.  But the women's prison and it's location were fictionalized.  For some reason I found these things annoying.  I would have preferred all fictionalized locations or all real.  But that's just me.

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