Book Reviews

The Silent Lady

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Paperback: Pages.

Published: 01 April 2002 by

ISBN: 0552169072

EAN: 9780552169073

The woman who presented herself at the offices of the respectable firm of London solicitors was, the receptionist decided, clearly a vagrant who had been sleeping on the streets. The clothes that hung on her frail body were filthy, and she seemed unable to speak. When she asked to see the firm's senior partner, Alexander Armstrong, she was at first shown the door - but when Mr Armstrong learned the name of his visitor, all the office staff were amazed at his reaction. For Irene Baindor was a woman with a past, and her emergence from obscurity was to signal the unravelling of a mystery that had baffled the lawyer for twenty-six years.

What Irene - the silent lady of the title - had been doing, and where she had been, gradually emerged over the following weeks as Armstrong met the unlikely benefactors who had befriended her and helped her to build a useful and satisfying life in a sheltered environment. Now, at last, she was able to confront her tortured and violent past and find great happiness and contentment with the help of old friends and some newer ones.

Reviews

4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars  by Debra Found

Last But Not Least

This is the last book written by the famous and prolific author, Catherine Cookson. Unlike many of her previous books which were set in Northern England, this book is set in London. It tells the story of Irene Bairndor who arrives at a solicitor's office one day in 1955 having been missing for over 20 years. This is the story of her life before she went missing, whilst she was missing and once she had returned to the people who had been searching for her.

Despite being set in London, this is a fairly typical Catherine Cookson book. I know many people scorn her work but I occasionally enjoy sitting back and relaxing with one of her books. This book lost nothing despite the author being quite elderly and infirm when she wrote it. There is a touching forward by the author.

Catherine Cookson did write books which loosely followed a formula. You know from the beginning that the book will have a happy ending and somewhere on the way the main character will have to overcome extreme hardship. The plot isn't particularly complex and the twists are seen well in advance by the reader. A comment is made in the text along the lines of "I wonder where he hid all his money" and the reader knows that the main character will find this money at the crucial moment.........not brilliant in it's complexity but that didn't stop me enjoying this book. Sometimes it is right to sit back & enjoy a book that entertains without requiring too much from the reader.

Catherine Cookson is good at description. Occasionally there is a little much description and I thought the book was getting a bit repetitive in the middle. However, it soon picked up and managed not to get bogged down.

This book isn't going to set the literary world alight. However, it was a good read with a reasonable if slightly predictible plot and likeable characters. It was always clear who was the villan of the piece. I enjoyed reading this book and am tempted to return to others by this author.

 
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