The Barbers had said they would arrive by three. It was like waiting to begin a journey, Frances thought. She and her mother had spent the morning watching the clock, unable to relax. At half-past two she had gone wistfully over the rooms for what she supposed was the final time; after that there had been a nerving-up, giving way to a steady deflation, and now, at almost five, here she was again, listening to the echo of her own footsteps, feeling no sort of fondness for the sparsely furnished spaces, impatient simply for the couple to arrive, move in, get it over with.The Paying Guests
by Sarah Waters
My library hold arrived on Friday and I couldn't wait to begin SarahWaters' latest novel. I'm juggling a couple of books now and only managed 60 pages over the weekend but, facing the prospect of six hours alone in the car yesterday, I decided to download the audio version. It's narrated by the incomparable Juliet Stevenson and she made those six hours fly. Wish I could just read all day today...
Here's the goodreads summary:
It is 1922, and London is tense. Ex-servicemen are disillusioned; the out-of-work and the hungry are demanding change. And in South London, in a genteel Camberwell villa — a large, silent house now bereft of brothers, husband, and even servants — life is about to be transformed as impoverished widow Mrs. Wray and her spinster daughter, Frances, are obliged to take in lodgers.
With the arrival of Lilian and Leonard Barber, a modern young couple of the “clerk class,” the routines of the house will be shaken up in unexpected ways. Little do the Wrays know just how profoundly their new tenants will alter the course of Frances’s life — or, as passions mount and frustration gathers, how far-reaching, and how devastating, the disturbances will be.What do you think of the opening? Would you keep reading?
Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.
I've heard so much about this book, but the blurb never really grabbed me - however I really liked the intro! I wanted to know what happens when this couple finally arrives. Will be interested to hear your thoughts.ReplyDelete
Sarah - I've like some of Waters' books better than others, but this one if off to a strong start.Delete
Sounds interesting. I am staying away from most historical novels these days unless they are mysteries. I have had my full for this year and may begin again next year. Hope you like it.ReplyDelete
Harvee - I think there may be a mystery involved with this one... it's quite long, so I haven;t gotten to it yet.Delete
Nice choice. I am planning to read this one--it's been on my shelf for a while now. Enjoy!ReplyDelete
My Tuesday post: http://www.bookclublibrarian.com/2014/10/first-chapter-first-paragraph-80-and.html
Catherine - I haven't been disappointed by Waters yet!Delete
It's always lovely to have a book sweep you away. Here's MineReplyDelete
Paulita - I was fully invest after reading the first 60 pages, but I love the audio narration, too.Delete
I downloaded this one to Sparky a few weeks ago...and can't wait to read it! Love that intro...and from what I've heard, this is a truly engaging read. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.ReplyDelete
Laurel-Rain Snow - It has definitely pulled me in! Have a feeling you'll like this one, too.Delete
This one sounds interesting. I've read a few post-WWI books recently, but so far all have been set in the US, so this will be different.ReplyDelete
Kim - Post WWII London is a favorite setting for me.Delete
The intro is nice, but it doesn't grab me. I'm going to see what else Juliet Stevenson has narrated. Any suggestions?ReplyDelete
Vasilly - Most recently, I loved Stevenson's narration of The Signature of all Things by Elizabeth Gilbert. Another favorite was Trespass by Rose Tremain. She has helped me through many classics, too.Delete
I like the intro very much. Having just finished Fingersmith, I definitely want to read more by Sarah Waters. Just maybe not quite yet. :-)ReplyDelete
Literary Feline - I'm hoping this turns out to be a page-turner like Fingersmith!Delete
I'm fascinated by this era, and I'm sure I would enjoy this book. The author did a great job in the opening of showing the woman's anticipation and mounting nervousness. I'd keep reading to find out how the lodgers changed her life.ReplyDelete
My Tuesday post features THE BEARWALKER’S DAUGHTER.
Sandra - I love this time period, too. Waters is such a good writer!Delete
This looks excellent. I will look forward to your review!ReplyDelete
Monica - So far it's wonderful. I'm hoping the combination of print and audio will help me get through this long book quickly.Delete
Yayyy! I hope you love it!ReplyDelete
Andi - Thumbs up so far!Delete
I hate it when people are late... and then you end up feeling so guilty when they have a genuine excuse.ReplyDelete
Sounds like an interesting read.
Chippy - It really is a good read... and I hate being late!Delete
I've been really wanting to read this one. I love the intro. I hate that feeling when you're waiting for someone to arrive or waiting to leave. She does a great job with the description.ReplyDelete
I have been meaning to pick this one up. Now I will. It sounds promising.ReplyDelete
Oh yes, read-on. I loved this one.ReplyDelete
I definitely would continue and want to read more of this book.ReplyDelete
I would listen to anything Juliet narrates!ReplyDelete
JoAnn, I admit I've not read any Sarah Waters, although I've The Little Stranger on my shelf for years. This newest one sounds more interesting. I look forward to your review. ;)ReplyDelete
I also have not read anything by Sarah Waters, but I like the intro, the setting and the time period. I'm glad to hear the audio version is so captivating.ReplyDelete
I like the premise, though I confess I found the opening paragraph a bit choppy and hence not the easiest to read.ReplyDelete
Hope it's good--I will check back to see how you like it.
Love this opening. How come there's never enough time to read everything we want to read?ReplyDelete
Like this opening. Would definitely want to continue reading.ReplyDelete
I'd have to read a bit more before deciding. I hope you enjoy your book. Have a happy Halloween! kelley—the road goes ever ever onReplyDelete
Fasten your seat belt, JoAnn!ReplyDelete
I can't wait to read this one!ReplyDelete
This book is on our list for my book club this month! Well next month, November. I hope it's a good one. Sounds like it.ReplyDelete
I've only read The Night Watch (which I really enjoyed), so I'll be anxious to hear what you think of this audio. I have so many to listen to right now, which is a good thing, I think! :)ReplyDelete
Les - Juliet Stevenson does an excellent job with the audio, but I think Fingersmith may still be my favorite Waters novel.Delete
Yay for making time fly! This is an author I know I need to get to sooner rahter than later. Oh wait, it already is later!ReplyDelete
Stacy- Fingersmith is my favorite so far.Delete