I was hestitant to read this book because I had read several reviews that talked about Robin Pilcher moving out of his mother's shadow and emerging with his own style -- I liked his old style, and I was afraid that I might be disappointed. I worried in vain! This is a glorious book, with an "ensemble cast" -- five or six different stories, with different characters, all with a link to the renowned Edinburgh International Festival, which runs in August every year in Edinburgh Scotland which attracts celebrated artists, musicians, comedians, dancers and actors. This book reads like a Robert Altman film, think "Nashville" with a scottish burr. It is a joy, a delight to read, both funny and poignant. I recommend this book highly!
It was so boring and slow, and the characters so dull, I just couldn't stand to read it! Terrible! I'm glad to be rid of it.
I hesitated a bit in the first few chapters. While I'm a huge fan of Rosamunde, I wasn't sure that her son Robin's writing would suit me as well. Another reviewer said the characters were boring and evidently gave up.
I am so very, very glad that I did not let this doubt win.
Each chapter takes a look at a different character and the mundane melancholy of the first character seemed like just another woman with a fabulous job (international festival office in Edinburgh)and a complicated relationship that did not draw me into the story.
Pilcher is very good at character and relationship tho so I continue to give it a go.
By the end I'll admit to shedding a tear and am now bereft that I've finished the novel. It picked up pace significantly as the festival performers, organizers and a host of others melded together in an altogether believable plot.
A world class violinist comes of age under the management of a obsessed man who is jealous of her every moment away from the violin and from him; a firework company owner produces his 25th and final display at the end of festival; and an unknown comedian from a poor English neighborhood rises to meet the extraordinary opportunity presented to her by her hometown fans. There's also a retired film photography director in ill health who undertakes to tutor a car thief in the filming industry; a young freelance writer who must find a way to make the mortgage payments during the festival by renting rooms; and a young festival employee who must struggle thru the consequences of a long over affair that could possibly destroy her new marriage.
It all comes together well and I'm already missing the story. I'm off now to find another of his books.
This is a nice story; fun to read and easy to follow, yet compelling enough to hold your interest. Those who like me enjoyed Rosamunde Pilcher's books will be pleased to give her son, Robin, a try.