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Gill Buchanan's Blog

Humorous Fiction to keep you smiling

A Dry Spell by Clare Chambers

My third novel from this author and happy to read more.

To begin with I wasn't sure what the novel was about - in fact for quite a long time.

Set in the 1990s, we first meet Nina and her son James (about to turn 18). We then meet Jane, who is married to Guy, a headmaster in a Christian School. Jane seems troubled and has a difficult relationship with her youngest daughter, Harriet.

For over half the book I had no idea what the connection between Jane and Nina was and we don’t find this out until we go back to 1976 when Guy went on a fateful fieldtrip to Algeria and Nina went too.

I find Clare Chambers writing very funny and in this novel the scene when Jane and Guy and their daughters go to his parents for lunch is hilarious. They are served measly portions, so much so that usually they stop on route for something to eat so they are full on arrival. But this time they hadn’t. Also Guy’s brother is very much the revered one of the two of them. Poignant stuff.

I did wonder what the point of the story was for a long time but once I got it, I enjoyed it. I thought the ending was a little weak but overall, no regrets that I have now read my third novel from this author.


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