21.8.09

Review: The Secret Life of Evie Hamilton by Catherine Alliott


I read my first Catherine Alliott book, A Crowded Marriage a few months ago and loved it so when I heard that Penguin were publishing her new book, I couldn't wait to get hold of a copy!
It has only taken me two days to read as I was completely gripped from the very first page. Evie Hamilton lives in Oxford with her best-selling author husband and their beautiful daughter Anna. They have a charming life but this is about to come to an end when a letter arrives on Evie's doormat. Suddenly her whole life feels as though it is under attack and nothing will be the same again. I don't want to give too much away about the plot but there are many twists and turns and a very big surprise at the end that I really did not see coming.
Catherine Alliott sets the scene perfectly; I love how she conjured up Evie's idyllic life in Oxford, surrounded by the university and the rich culture it has to offer. Equally as lovely and believable was the setting of Evie's family home, a farm in rural Oxfordshire, run by Evie's worn-out brother Tim and sister-in-law Caro. I could totally imagine these places and Catherine Alliott takes you below the surface to show you that things are not always as perfect as they seem and that you should not always assume that people are blissfully happy and content with their lot in life.
I really identified with the character of Evie Hamilton and her insecurities. Her strength lies in her honesty about how she is feeling; many people put on a facde but it seems that she is almost unable to.
I think that I am going to become a big fan of Catherine Alliott's books! I find her similar to Lisa Jewell and Marian Keyes in that her writing style is extremely witty and entertaining, especially the dialogue but the poignant moments are still there and always beautifully created.
If you want a book that will make you giggle but also stop and think then I would definitely recommend giving this a go!

7 comments:

Karen said...

This one sounds wonderful - I have seen it around a lot and have wondered if it would be any good - now I know! I will have to pick it up next time I see it.

Dot said...

Karen- It's one of the best books that I have read recently, hope you enjoy it!

Amy said...

I don't read Alliott any more, she is such a snob. I find her portrayals of lower class characters very offensive indeed.

Dot said...

Amy- I haven't come across anytbing like that yet, only read two of Alliott's books but I have to say that I really enjoyed them both. Your blog is looking lovely by the way, just trying to catch up with everyones posts.

chicklitreviews said...

I really like the sound of this one! I've never read any of Alliott's books but might start with this one!

Dot said...

chicklitreviews- you should definitely give her a go, I loved this one and A Crowded Marriage- really good books!

Cupcakes And Peonies said...

I am just reading this on your recommendation and loving it already! Thank you

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