The Great Divorce

Very often I read books by the same author, or on similar subjects written in a familiar style.

Perhaps the most refreshing book last year was the “The Hundred Year Old Man who climbed out of the window and disappeared”.

The author took something barely credible but strangely familiar to use a central character (and misfit friends) to weave a story spanning decades using stories that escalated in lunacy chapter by chapter.

Most of all it was fun.

Whilst Jonas Jonasson’s book starts on the ground floor of a care home, The Great Divorce starts at a bus stop.

The people here are a grim miserable lot.  As I turned the pages of the 100 Year Old Man the pages turned themselves.

In The Great Divorce it was only my respect for the author that kept me going.

Chapter 1 was grim, but by the second and third chapters I began “to get it”.

One by one the characters who’ve left places of  isolation, and struggled to respect their fellow passengers hop off the bus and seem to meet people they know.

Incredibly they are each like pale ghosts amongst solid weighty beings who call all the shots.

Each character seems to to either engage, or evade a “solid person” who wants a dialogue.

All the travellers find walking on this extraordinary planet painful, but that’s not all -they each come face to face with issues from their former existence.

Some have murdered, some have hectored their partners, but none are happy. They all have an opportunity for a fresh start, but can’t lay down their grievances and ideas about justice.

No darkness can exist in this glorious solid land, and one by one they gravitate back towards the bus.

One or two want to know more…..

Clever Stuff – 7 out of 10!