Friday, 22 April 2011

A Private Affair, Lesley Lotto: Guest Review by Becky D

The story focuses on army lives and army wives (please excuse the rhyming I just couldn’t resist!) and the narrative jumps from the present day to the characters’ pasts. The book revolves around four main female characters and their various spouses and friends, most are married or involved with British army officers and the action takes place around the world following the women and their husbands as they go on tour.

Each lead; Abby, Sam, Megan and Dani, is given a background story by the author which is revealed over the progression of the book which gripped me and the sudden change in character being written about did pull me in to keep reading to find out the fate character. Although I did enjoy the almost mystery-book quality this gave the book because of the number of characters it did make for a bit of a long windy book and parts of the back story seemed to be put in for no reason and some events lacked explanation with the reader left to guess at what happened and why. This is an interesting way to tell a story to use your own imagination and not have every detail spelt out for you. However, I felt that it left me simply hungry for answers and feeling a bit let down by the author.

The book follows each of the women to show how they came to be involved with their army husband or boyfriend and the impact on their lives, and eventually how they come together in one place with the exception of Dani. Her storyline although connected by another character at one point in the book seems to have been added as something of a separate to the rest and could in all honest be lifted out without affecting the book.

From the start of the book you feel the author is building to some sort of head and through viewing the lives of these women I did begin to get invested in what the event would be and what would happen to the characters. Which is why I was slightly disappointed by the sudden and rather swift end that almost seem to come out of nowhere and ended a bit too abruptly with only a short final chapter to tie up a few loose ends.
All in all a pretty good read and one I would recommend for a holiday read for the beach but I would have liked a less rushed ending.

You can get it here.