A Change in Altitude, the newest novel from master author Anita Shreve, offers another glimpse into love, commitment, and the search for self. Following a tragic accident in Kenya , Margaret is forced to reevaluate herself, her marriage, even her understanding of life. While beautifully written, the story fails to fully engage the reader. It feels tired and worn, and with just a change of the setting and the characters' names, this could be one of a number of her novels. A Change in Altitude is classic Shreve, but I cant help but feel Ive read this story before.
All of us have defining moments in our lives, moments that can change the direction we are traveling in small or large ways. Sometimes we notice those moments and sometimes we don't. And sometimes those moments are so monumental, that they are almost impossible to find a way through them at all. This is the story that Anita Shreve has woven; one woman, one man, one moment and their struggle to find a way through that moment.
This is a quiet story, a tender story, a thoughtful story, not one to rush through. It will not keep you up at night to see who done it, but it will seep into your heart and you will remember those moments in your life that changed you, that turned your path.
I am about half-way through this audiobook but I think far enough along to make a short review. First, the reader, Anna Stone. I have learned and remarked in other reviews that the person who puts text to voice and words can be either a reader, a narrator or, in very rare instances, a performer. Most audiobooks fall in the first two categories, the narrator preferable over the reader. Unfortunately, Ms, Stone's style is that of a reader.
Over the years, Anita Shreve has always been a decent summer read in book form. Neither brilliant nor talentless, her books tell a fairly good tale in a pleasing way. This one is no different. All in all, it's easy listening for a long drive and I give it 3.5 stars.
I loved this book! I don't like all of her books but this one drew me in from beginning to end. Its one of those stories that I think about occassionally even after I've finished reading it and wonder where the characters are now.
This book was informative on the life and politics of Kenya, I found the story line weak and lost interest in the marriage of the lead players. It was very good about customs and geography of Kenya and the unbalance of wealth and political power. I do not know how accurate Ms Shreve is on today's Kenya but it is not some where I would want to live.
Ms Shreve is unperdictable in her quality of stories, some are very good, Fortune Rock, The Pilot's, Wife Weight of the Water and some are getting perdictable and not up to her quality. I will continue reading, however, as she is best of woman's romantic fiction.
The up and downs of this couples relationship in the book seemed understandable at times and then at times ridiculous and I was going to say that is unrealistic but maybe now that I think about the first part of this sentence, I am wrong. It has real moments about a married couple that I dont think many people can understand why they are together. Instead of the starting the story in on the loved affair that brought them together we are brought in on what starts to drive them to different worlds.
It is not a very happy story I would say that is why I didnt like very much. It is the kind of story that will depress you if you think about it to much.
I read this for a book club selection but had a hard time finishing it. In fact I am not even sure if I did.
I liked reading about the joyous parts in the book like the wife starting her career and the couple trying hard to work through there differences. There was much joy in this book though. Maybe that is the altitude it was suppose to be on but it made me not enjoy it.
Loved it. Anita Shreve never disappoints. This is an engaging story of how a few seemingly meaningless actions can have have completely unexpected, and even tragic, consequences. This book, like so many of Anita Shreve's has the quick, easy pace of a good beach read, yet is still thought-provoking. I recommend it.
I found the book interesting...the way Africa is described with great detail was nice, the struggles between Patrick and Margaret were real, the ending was good but left a little more to be desired. overall a good read not my favorite.
I found this to be an enjoyable read, however, without giving away the main story of the book, I believe in personal responsibility and not blaming others or placing guilt mainly on others when tragedy happens. I feel the husband may have had reason to feel somewhat guilty, but the object of his attractions did not return his attentions in the way he intended and no one told Diane to be such a go-getter and do what she did.
Margaret, the main character, spends the this book trying to figure out how much of what happens around her she is responsible for. After following her new husband from the US to Africa for his medical career, she finds herself involved in Africa in ways she did not anticipate. The book is bookended with Margaret's two climbs of Mt. Kenya, and it is during these climbs that she finds herself face-to-face with the struggle of how much guilt to take on and how much responsibility actors must assume. As the conflicts between guilt and responsibility circle in ever larger orbits throughout the book, the reader can't help but think about how freeing it is to believe, as the mountain guide tells us to, that "Stupid people do stupid things, and sometimes they have only themselves to blame."
Another good read by Anita Shreve! You are hooked from chapter one as you follow the lives to a married couple living overseas. A little sad at times, but you are hooked as you watch the characters progress.
Anita Shreve is one of my favorite authors. However I was a bit disappointed in this one. For the first half of the book, it seemed the story dragged. Thankfully, I held on because it did get better in the last half. I think part of my problem was that Margaret was as bland as her name (My apologies to those with that name!) I found it hard to not only relate to her, but feel a kinship her to her (which normally makes for a good story for me)
Patrick and Margaret have already been together for two years - married for just five months - when Patrick, a physician, receives news of a recently vacated position working in a hospital in Kenya. Despite the fact that the couple will be living in another country, the job description seems perfect for Patrick and he decides to take the position. Having never traveled anywhere beyond her tiny hometown in Massachusetts, Magaret willingly gives up her job as a photographer for a struggling local newspaper, and eagerly joins her husband on what she is certain will be a grand adventure. So the young newlyweds embark on their year-long sojourn to Africa with the highest of hopes that their experience will be memorable.
While Patrick views their move to Africa as a chance to fulfill a longstanding desire to practice in his chosen field, Margaret quickly realizes that she is the person who is most out of place within an otherwise familiar society. She soon understands that there is much that she doesn't know about the complex mores of her new home. And while Patrick has quickly grown accustomed to living in Africa, Margaret also discovers that there is still much for her to learn about the husband she thought she knew.
Three months after their arrival, a British couple invites them to take part in an expedition to the summit of Mount Kenya. According to their new friends, Margaret and Patrick will be climbing with themselves and another couple, during a four-day-long excursion. Although they are relative amateurs when it comes to climbing, Margaret and Patrick nevertheless eagerly accept their acquaintances' invitation. After all, the British couple assures them that although the ascent is arduous, the expedition is otherwise entirely safe.
Except it isn't. At some point during the team's harrowing ascent, a terrible accident occurs. In the aftermath of such devastating tragedy, Margaret struggles to understand what actually happened on the mountain and how these events have seemingly transformed herself and her marriage, perhaps forever.
Anita Shreve's A Change in Altitude provides a heartfelt portrait of a fledgling marriage. Written with a stunning emotional intensity and strikingly lyrical language, Ms. Shreve transports her readers to the exotic landscape of Africa and into the most intimate of relationships. She delves into the private life of a newly married couple, the irrevocable impact of a tragedy, and the elusive nature of forgiveness.
I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book; I found it to be an interesting story with an intriguing plot. I have consistently found Ms. Shreve to be an excellent writer; her characters are remarkably sympathetic and well-developed - just ordinary people faced with every day, realistic dilemmas. In my opinion, this was a well-told story, set in an exotic location and was a leisurely-paced, enjoyable reading experience for me. I give this book a definite A+!