A
Literary Saloon
&
Site of Review.

Trying to meet all your book preview and review needs.



Contents:
Main
the Best
the Rest
Review Index
Links

weblog

crQ
to e-mail us:



In Association with Amazon.com


In association with Amazon.com - UK


In 
Partnerschaft 
mit 
Amazon.de

the Complete Review
the complete review - fiction

     

The Accidental Woman

by
Jonathan Coe


general information | review summaries | our review | links | about the author

To purchase The Accidental Woman



Title: The Accidental Woman
Author: Jonathan Coe
Genre: Novel
Written: 1987
Length: 151 pages
Availability: The Accidental Woman - US
The Accidental Woman - UK
The Accidental Woman - Canada
The Accidental Woman - India
La femme de hasard - France
Donna per caso - Italia

- Return to top of the page -



Our Assessment:

B- : well written, but too cold

See our review for fuller assessment.




Review Summaries
Source Rating Date Reviewer
TLS . 15/5/1987 Nigel Lawson

- Return to top of the page -



The complete review's Review:

       Jonathan Coe's first novel, The Accidental Woman is a study of Maria, an aimless, often indifferent woman, more at the mercy of fate than able to direct her life. The first girl from her school to get a place to Oxford, the novels follows her peregrinations at the university and then beyond. It is partially a university novel, but Coe does not take the predictable and well-trod road, choosing a different vantage point (as he also does, more successfully, in A Touch of Love).
       The novel covers some fifteen years, and though stylistically accomplished (Coe is a clever and engaging writer), his characters here did not truly grip us. "Three years later, and it is still raining," he writes, moving the story forward. "I tell a lie, of course, there have been intervening periods of sunshine, but they do not concern us," he allows. It sums up the best and worst of the book. Clever, yes, and well constructed -- but too much dreariness hanging over it. Not enough sunshine.
       Maria is a successful figure, but it is not a success that appeals to us greatly. A mannered piece, it lacks the humour of Coe's later efforts.
       An interesting and fairly short literary piece, it is lukewarmly recommended.

- Return to top of the page -



Links:

The Accidental Woman: Reviews: Jonathan Coe: Other books by Jonathan Coe under review: Other books of interest under review:
  • See Index of Contemporary British fiction at the complete review

- Return to top of the page -



About the Author:

       Born in 1961, Jonathan Coe attended Cambridge and Warwick universities. He is the author of several novels.

- Return to top of the page -


© 1999-2014 the complete review

Main | the New | the Best | the Rest | Review Index | Links