Thursday, 18 October 2012

Jonathan Hill

Jonathan burst onto the scene earlier in 2012 with a very good collection of short stories.  This is his first longer work - short novella in length - and it's wonderful!

Maureen goes to Venice  Maureen Goes to Venice

My review -

This is Jonathan Hill's first longer work, although it is still possible to read it in an afternoon or an evening. My main problem with his earlier work 'Eclectic' was that I didn't feel I got to know the characters, or indeed, the author. This work addresses all my earlier misgivings. Maureen, met briefly in the earlier book, is seen here in all her dreadful glory! She goes for a short break in Venice, meets (well, can't avoid) a gentleman, and the story continues from there.

The character of Maureen is fleshed out (apt choice of word maybe?) and in addition to her 'immovable object' persona we also see a softer side. She hates to be cruel (deliberately) and there's a touching moment when she misses her late husband. There are some wonderful phrases used here - the author can certainly manipulate language to make you smile, laugh and think a bit. Maureen reminded me a little of Agatha Raisin, but Agatha is more deliberate, cunning, whereas poor Maureen is a force of nature. There's no malice in the hurricane that trashes your house, but it's just as wrecked as if there had been! Jonathan Hill, you've created a monster! She's atrocious and I want to read more!

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