Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Slightest Provocation - Pam Rosenthal

As children of feuding Derbyshire landowners, Mary Penley and Kit Stansell eloped against their families' wishes. But neither their ardor nor their marriage could survive their own restless natures. Nine years later, Kit is a rising star in the military while Mary has made her way in a raffish, intellectual society of poets and reformers. A chance meeting re-ignites their passion, but still they have very different values. Yet when Kit uncovers a political conspiracy that threatens all of England, they agree to put their differences aside. Amid danger and disillusionment, Kit and Mary rediscover the bonds that are stronger than time, the selves who have never really parted-and the love that is their destiny.

I had a real problem with this book and ended up reading others in between. I didn't give up on it but in the end I'm not sure if I shouldn't have.

This is the story of Mary Penley and Kit Stansell. The daughter of a brewer and the (illegitimate) son of a duchess whose parents hated each other, they fell in love and decided to elope together but their marriage didn't last long with both committing adultery. When the story opens they have been estranged for a number of years and meeting in Paris they decide that the best thing is to start divorce proceedings. They both travel to England and they meet again at the village where they grew up. Mary is visiting her family and Kit investigating a political conspiracy. They soon find that they can't keep their hands off each other...

My main problem with the story was Rosenthal's writing style. There were many points of view, many flashbacks and that made me feel very distant from the characters and if I can't care about them I have a hard time wanting to know about them. That's the reason why I felt that maybe I should have left it DNF. Most people seem to have loved it and felt that this was a rich story but my lack of interest in it just made it a chore to reach the end. I couldn't see why Kit and Mary were so in love, or why they couldn't stop meeting when they seemed to have very different ways of thinking.  Maybe I should tackle it some other time when I can concentrate more... or maybe I should go read something else...

Grade: 2/5


  1. Nah, go read something else :)

    I have seen that cover before.

  2. I wanted to like it because I have enjoyed other books by Rosenthal, and liked the idea. But it just left me cold... so you are not the only one to not like it, Ana!

  3. Mystica,
    Glad it worked for you. :-)

    I think I will. :-)
    Like you I think I've seen it before but can't remember where...

    I'm glad to have company. ;-)


I love to chat about books and stuff and I would love to hear from like minded readers. Please do leave me a comment :-)


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