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The Camomile Lawn
 
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The Camomile Lawn [Format Kindle]

Mary Wesley
4.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

'Told with elegance and asperity by the superb Anna Massey' (Sunday Telegraph)

'Anna Massey could read the telephone directory and I would listen. When she's reading a writer of the quality of Mary Wesley, it becomes a real pleasure.'

(Oxford Times)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Behind the large house, the fragrant camomile lawn stretches down to the Cornish cliffs. Here, in the dizzying heat of August 1939, five cousins have gathered at their aunt's house for their annual ritual of a holiday. For most of them it is the last summer of their youth, with the heady exhilarations and freedoms of lost innocence, as well as the fears of the coming war.



The Camomile Lawn moves from Cornwall to London and back again, over the years, telling the stories of the cousins, their family and their friends, united by shared losses and lovers, by family ties and the absurd conditions imposed by war as their paths cross and recross over the years. Mary Wesley presents an extraordinarily vivid and lively picture of wartime London: the rationing, imaginatively circumvented; the fallen houses; the parties, the new-found comforts of sex, the desperate humour of survival - all of it evoked with warmth, clarity and stunning wit. And through it all, the cousins and their friends try to hold on to the part of themselves that laughed and played dangerous games on that camomile lawn.


Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 482 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 338 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 014012392X
  • Editeur : Vintage Digital; Édition : New Ed (31 mars 2012)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B007BLOCFU
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°90.262 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires en ligne

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4.5 étoiles sur 5
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Commentaires client les plus utiles
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 An enchanted book 24 mai 2007
Par D. Legare TOP 1000 COMMENTATEURS VOIX VINE
Format:Broché
Five cousins have gathered in their aunt's house on the Cornish coast in August 1939. The war is about to break out and casts a dark shadow upon their usual amusements. They live this last enchanted summer as if it was the last. When the war is declared and England is cut off from the rest of the world, we follow them in London and in Cornwall. The men are engaged in military activities whereas the women serve in intelligence or logistic government offices. All of them, especially the women live with an unusual intensity in an atmosphere of fear and exhilaration. They determinedly transgress the established moral conventions with delight. You will enjoy their story as it is told by two of the ageing cousins en route for the funerals of an old friend nearly 45 years later.
A deliciously subversive book.....I really loved every moment of it.
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4.0 étoiles sur 5 Bien 22 janvier 2014
Par Brigitte
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Livre très agréable à lire; L'atmosphère, les personnages, l'époque font que ce livre une fois refermé, il reste de la nostalgie d'avoir passé un aussi bon moment.
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Amazon.com: 4.1 étoiles sur 5  35 commentaires
70 internautes sur 74 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 One of my all-time favourites for holiday reading 15 avril 1997
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Vividly paints a picture of wartime life in London and rural England, from the point of view of some unorthodox characters. It is one of my all-time favourite books - not because it is particularly 'literary' or a great classic, but because it is such an absorbing and touching read. All Mary Wesley's books are good, but this one is by far the best
19 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 The intensity of life in war-time 21 juin 2006
Par Ralph Blumenau - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
The book opens on the very eve of the Second World War, with five cousins on holiday at the Cornish home of their Aunt Helena and Uncle Richard (all upper middle class). Four of them (two young women, two young men) are aged 19 or 20, the fifth is Sophy who is just ten. There are also the twin sons of the local rector, who has also taken in a Jewish refugee couple, Max and Monika, from Austria. The novel traces the lives principally of these eleven characters during the war, much of it set in London. Under the intensity of life in war-time, the young people lose any conventional inhibitions they might possibly have had under other circumstances. (I say `possibly', because uninhibited behaviour had been the mark of certain young socialites in the 1920s). One can hardly keep track of the sexual permutations and combinations between them. Even middle-aged Uncle Richard and Aunt Helena have unorthodox liaisons. It is all rather rackety, and in the first half of the novel one feels the characters are driven more by sensuality than by anything deeper, with emotions only superficially engaged. But in the end they do become more deeply involved emotionally; some psychological complexities then emerge (especially for Helena and Calypso) and the reader's sympathies slowly become engaged with them. Most of the story is told as a war-time narrative; but at the end of some chapters we move on forty years or so, when those who are then still alive are converging for Max's funeral and look back on those years; so we learn something about what has happened to them since.

Some of the characters come more alive than others in the book. Especially successful, I think, is the portrait of Uncle Richard, for the most part just avoiding caricature. Calypso, the eldest of the cousins, and Sophy, the youngest, have some personality, as do Max and Monika; several other characters are not rounded out at all. All of them talk in short laconic sentences (the greater part of the book consists of dialogue), and only Richard, Max and Monika have a way of speaking which is in any way distinctive.

There is humour in this book and pathos; it shows that the intensity of war-time life brought its pleasures as well as its sorrows. It is a good read, but I think it lacks the subtlety of a great novel.
18 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 War time experiences. 14 juin 2001
Par Beverley Strong - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I found this to be a delightful story ,set firstly in just pre-war England,about a group of cousins and how they interact with each other as the war begins. I wonder if the sexual licenses taken were really a reflection of how young people felt at that time--live for all your worth today for tomorrow we'll probably be dead-- or would it have happened an any case.You really come to grips with these characters as the book is written by a woman in her 70's who HAS lived and obviously knows what she's writing about. Great read and I'll be looking for more by Mary Wesley--a woman after ny own heart.
15 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 The latest English novel I have devoured.. 30 décembre 2000
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
..and I loved it. I particularly like English settings during World War II, and this wasn't a disappointment! The adventures and misadventures of a group of cousins during the war, the sexual tension and attraction between two of them, and the general soap opera atmosphere is told in flashbacks by the cousins' elderly aunt as she is on her way to a funeral, the funeral of her own wartime lover. The book itself reminded me of "The Cazalet Chronicles" series by Elizabeth Jane Howard, which I also highly recommend, though with racier language. This is the first of Mary Wesley's novels that I have read, but it certainly won't be the last.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 An Underdeveloped Novel 24 janvier 2003
Par J C E Hitchcock - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
In August 1939, shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War, five cousins come to spend the summer holidays with their uncle and aunt in Cornwall. (The title refers to the lawn in front of the house, which later becomes a symbol of their carefree pre-war youth). The novel then follows the changing fortunes of these five, of their Uncle Richard and Aunt Helena, of Max and Monika, an Austrian Jewish refugee couple, of the local Rector and his wife and of their twin sons, through the war. Intercut with the wartime scenes are scenes set in the 1980s, at Max's funeral, when his surviving friends and acquaintances meet to reveal what has happened to them during the intervening years.
The above synopsis might suggest that this is a lengthy novel; in fact, it is quite a short one (in my edition only 330 pages), and in my view it is the shortness of the novel which is its major problem. Miss Wesley has set herself the task of telling the stories of a large group of people, but has not allowed herself adequate space in which to perform that task. As a result, the complex story is told in insufficient detail, which means that the characters fail to come alive.
The major theme of the novel is the challenge posed to conventional ideas of morality by the changed conditions of wartime. (Most of the characters either form adulterous liaisons or indulge in casual promiscuity). This theme could have been an interesting one, but unfortunately the characters are under-developed and lack any sense of an inner life. It is therefore difficult to understand their motivation or the reasons for their behaviour, and the oportunity to develop this major theme is lost. Most of the main characters, in fact, simply come across as self-centred and lacking in feeling. Even those described as being in love are frequently unfaithful to each other. This would not matter if Miss Wesley's aim had been to create a portrait of a cold, selfish group of people, but I was left with the strong impression that she wanted to make many of them sympathetic or attractively unconventional and failed to do so. This is not a book I could recommend.
I noticed a few factual errors in the book. I will not go through them all, but I must say that, contrary to what Miss Wesley states, the conductor Wilhelm Furtwangler was not "very pro-Hitler".
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