Friday, September 9, 2011

40 Love by Madeleine Wickham

From Goodreads: Everyone wins this game of literary tennis, a comedy of manners about envy in which Wickham skewers the nouveau riche. At their country estate, Patrick Chance and his wife host a weekend tennis party. As four couples gather on the sunny terrace, it seems obvious who among them is succeeding, and who is falling behind. But by the end of the party, nothing will be quite as certain. While the couples’ children amuse themselves with pony rides and rehearsals for a play, the adults suffer a series of personal revelations and crises. Wickham’s nonstop action reveals at every turn that matters may not be as they seem, and in the end one thing is crystal clear: the weekend is about anything but tennis.

This was a win from the Library Thing Early Reviewer Program. I love Sophie Kinsella (who uses her alternate name Madeleine Wickham to pen this one) so I was expecting to enjoy it. I liked it a little bit but not very much. With Brit chick lit I expect a plucky female lead who is pursuing career and/or romance, some laugh out loud funny scenes, and a happy ending. This didn't have any of that. The four couples come for a tennis weekend and their lives just unravel. Relationships sour, finances plummett, and friendships are tested. I felt bad for them and at the same time somewhat confused keeping up with who's who among the four couples, the extra guest, the nanny and cook and all their children - that's a lot of characters to figure out in what is supposed to be a "fluffy" book! There are some witty moments but it's such a dark story that it is hard to really laugh out loud. It was entertaining but it just wasn't a favorite for me.

I read this book for the Library Thing Early Reviewers program.

It also counts for some of my other challenges....


bermudaonion said...

For some reason, I usually don't enjoy the Madeleine Wickham books as much as the Sophie Kinsella ones. Sorry this one wasn't stellar.

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