Friday, August 6, 2010

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

I don't think I am the right person to do this...
I don't feel scholarly adequate!
Referencing all best romantic classics and throwing around old words like I'm supposed to know what they mean.  The nerve :)
I can't be the ONLY one who had never heard of a perambulator. Right?  Though nothing stayed mystery long enough for me to worry about looking them up (y'all know how that's not my style) I just kept plugging along and they sort of defined themselves.
For the record, perambulator = 
It was a sloooow beginning for me.  Took about a week to get 30 pages in, and then like a perambulator baby carriage stroller being pushed down a grassy hill, the book really took off for me!
How's that for a metaphoric segway? Go me!

First Line: It was November.

Vida Winter is England's best-loved writer and nobody knows a single detail of her life.  Every interview, every personal query, wound up in a woven tale so intriguing it could have been counted among her fifty-plus published works. She's a writer, she's a storyteller, she's a liar.  She commissions a young biographer, Margaret Lea, to finally tell her life story.  The truth.  The story that follows is a journey far more unbelievable, and much more fanatical then anything she has ever made up.  But is it true?  True or not, the subplot is her intended and unpublished Thirteenth Tale.

That is my summary in a very teeny tiny nutshell!
I don't want to ruin anything, but I have so much more to discuss...

The following is intended for those who have already read The Thirteenth Tale:  
Holy cow what a rush!!!  I can't even begin to describe my relief that Vida wasn't Adeline.  I was trying so hard to love her character because I knew what she grew up to be (or thought I knew) but the vicious little devil child was making it so hard!!!  But how could the twins NOT be messed up?  Their parents were already crazy - oh yeah and ummm related - scandalous!  Then enter the ghost child, brilliant!  She was the perfect solution to all my trepidation.  I was allowed to love Vida, and love her I did!  Any wisp of goodness Adeline had was Vida all along.  Knowing her little secret made me want to go through and find all the clues to her presence.  Setterfield left so many, I wouldn't be surprised if I was the only one who didn't figure it out.  But I do love a good surprise so I don't try and pick things apart.  Growing up my mom never had to hide my Christmas presents or find a way to keep Santa possible because I allowed it to happen so easily - I loved the magic! I am excited about the prospect of Margaret and the Doctor - didn't really see that coming either - instead I was trying to wrap my brain around how it could be not weird for me if she hooked up with sixty year old Aurelius (I'm a hopeless romantic) - The Doctor is a much more 'easy to accept' match-up!  My only struggle is that she didn't publish the biography - because what an AMAZING story - at least I got to read it :)
********END SPOILER********


Chantele said...

I have had this on my "to-read" list forever! I need to get to it soon! :) Your reviews are hilarious by the way. You are so funny! :)

Darci said...

i am sooo waiting for diane to write something else- i loved her style.

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