L’Anglaise by Helen E Mundler

L'Anglaise by Helen E. Mundler

EXCERPT: … (she) had supposed that Hugo’s funeral would take place in a church, none in particular, but behind some blameless edifice of North London, perhaps even beautiful.

Margaret had served the funeral arrangements up as a fait accompli, had completed her message on Ella’s voice-mail with the phrase, ‘It’s at the Mount Vernon crematorium, if you want to come,’ thus rendering her an intruder, an outsider at her own father’s funeral, uncertain of her status, like an au pair on the scene of a family tragedy.

ABOUT THIS BOOK: At 35 years old, Ella is no longer excited by her academic career in France and has not found love. Following the unexpected death of her father, she is thrown into crisis, but then she meets the enigmatic Max. Over the course of a summer, their romance deepens—until she makes a discovery that throws everything off course. As Ella’s life becomes bound up with the stories of two other Englishwomen in France, she finds the freedom to tread an unconventional path and to love in her own way. This rich and complex work examines the effects on children of parents in fraught and painful relationships; the fragility of identity; and the ways love can heal.

MY THOUGHTS: L’Anglaise is a quietly brilliant book. Mundler’s writing is awkward in some places, deliberate I think as it complements Ella’s awkwardness with her own life. For although she is outwardly successful, she is not ‘comfortable’, not in her professional nor private lives, and certainly not with her family. If you have ever felt that you were the only person not issued with a rule book at the outset of life, then you will relate to Ella.

In other places, Mundler’s writing is gentle, touching, surprisingly perceptive. Thesetwo writing styles, artistically combined, produce an engaging and absorbing read. There were several times, as I was reading, that I wondered if this might be a memoir, slightly auto-biographical. Still I wonder.

L’Anglaise is a read that must not be rushed. It was a read that often made me stop and think, to recall moments in my own life and to view them from a different angle.


THE AUTHOR: Helen E. Mundler is an associate professor. She is the author of Homesickness, as well as two critical works, Intertextualité dans l’oeuvre d’A.S.Byatt and The Otherworlds of Liz Jensen: a Critical Reading. She lives in Paris.

DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Holland House via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of L’Anglaise by Helen E. Mundler for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.

Please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com for an explanation of my rating system.

This review and others are also published on my Goodreads.com page https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2323364566


Author: sandysbookaday

I love good quality chocolate. I love the ocean and love to be in, on or beside it. I read any and every where. I am a proud mum and Nana. I like wine, gin, Southern Comfort, a cold Heineken on a hot day. I am very versatile like that. I cross stitch, do jigsaws, garden, and work on a farm. I am an occasional scribbled. I have far too many books I want to read to ever find the time to die. I am an active member of Goodreads as Sandy *the world could end while I was reading and I would never notice* and review on Amazon under the name Sandyj21. My Goodreads reviews are automatically linked to my Facebook page. Groups I belong to and participate in on Goodreads include: The Mystery, Crime and Thriller Group; Mysteries and Crime Thrillers; Psychological Thrillers; Reading for Pleasure; Crime Detective Mystery Thrillers; English Mysteries; Dead Good Crime; Kindle English Mystery, All About Books and NZ Readers. April 2016 I made the Top 1% of Goodreads reviewers (As follows) Hello Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*, In our community of readers, you stand out in a notable way: You're one of the top 1% of reviewers on Goodreads! With every rave and every pan, with every excited GIF and every critical assessment, you've helped the Goodreads community get closer to a very important milestone – the 50 Million Reviews mark!

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