Indian Summer (by Marcia Willett)

Marcia Willett has become one of my favourite writers in recent years. So when I saw her latest novel on TheBookbag shelves, I had no hesitation in requesting it to review! Her novels tend to be character-based with quite large casts, yet each person is memorable, with his or her quirks and endearing characteristics.

Indian Summer starts by introducing us to Mungo, a retired actor and director. In one sense this is his book; yet the plot, to start with, seems to feature two women on the brink of possible romances. Kit - an old friend from the Chadwick trilogy - has been contacted by an old boyfriend. Emma, a young army wife, might be embarking on an affair...

This novel is set entirely in a small neighbourhood in Devon, with a few forays to a nearby café. As ever, Marcia Willett gives warm descriptions of places without becoming tedious, realistic conversation that stays entirely 'PG' rated, and no intrusions into her characters' bedrooms. The result is a thoughtful story, packed with interesting people. Perhaps a little slow-moving in places, it quickly drew me in.

There's much to think about, including the possible ramifications of an affair, and there are some quite shocking revelations at the end of the novel. But the serious side is nicely tempered with the innocence of a delightful four-year-old and the pomposity of a would-be author who has not the slightest idea what's going on around him.

All in all, I enjoyed this book very much. Currently available only in hardback or Kindle form.

You can also read my longer review of 'Indian Summer' at the Bookbag site.

Review by copyright 2014 Sue's Book Reviews

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