Newly married Patrick and Margaret decide to make a trip to Kenya. Patrick a doctor, is busy with his practice and Margaret a photography novice, finds she has much idle time on her hands. When her car breaks down, Margaret finds herself being helped by an English couple Arthur and Diana. The couples quickly become friends and Arthur and Diana offer Patrick and Margaret a nice cottage to use on their property. In short time it is discovered that Arthur and Diana are planning a trip up Mt Kenya and invite the other couple along. Margaret is unsure, but Patrick is excited and encouraging so the trip is planned.
The trip turns out to be a big mistake in more ways than one and a tragic accident where Margaret plays a role, changes the dynamics of life for Patrick and Margaret forever.
I have read and enjoyed Anita Shreve before. Her book Testimony, blew me away. However I have to say this story eked me in so many ways and does not rate more from me than an unfortunate rant, in which I apologize for before I even begin.
First off… I listened to this on audio and it seemed to take forever for the story to get moving. I believe it was disc three before it became interesting and that was actually the highlight of the audio/ book… the actual climbing of Mt. Kenya and the moments before and after the big plot drop. I actually loved that part and thought ok…. now we are going….
shortly after the big happening the story dropped off for me again. While more interesting than the beginning (as now there was the *happening* to deal with), it just overall fell flat.
Margaret was extremely unlikable. And no I do not have to love all my main characters, but they do need to have something behind the unsuitableness and Margaret was just… bland. She had no fire or spunk. Se also had no sense of right and wrong, and no conscience (ok… maybe that’s the same thing…). I also felt I really never knew Patrick. Margaret mainly takes the center stage and Patrick pops in and out of the picture. I never felt the urge to cheer him on or yell at him to wake up. he was kind of “ehhh”.
With all that said, in the end it felt like the story line just stopped. No big triumphant “ah ha” moment… just kind of end of the journey. Period. The End. Roll Credits. Thank the academy.
It was really a “meh” read. Errr…. listen (audio).
I will certainly venture my way back to Anita Shreve as she touches on some powerful subjects ands gives me the feeling of a stronger personalitied Jodi Piccoult. And of course, check out other opinions on this one. I could certainly be in the minority here. But my two cents are that Shreve has done better and I think if you were new to this author this would not be the one I suggest you start with.
In recap this book was an “ehhh”, “meh, “errrrr” read.
Good Reads Review
The 2011 WHERE Are You Reading map has been updated to include A Change In Altitude
I picked this one up at my local library