Monday, March 24, 2008

Private Arrangements pt 2 - finished in a frenzy!

Okay! I finished this fine book in frenzy last night. (See write-up part 1 here.) Oh, this was a fun one, filled with great moments that I wish I could trot out here.

I will say this: I found the torture of this book to be absolutely exquisite—secret longings, touches that burn, the pain of a destroyed relationship that still lives.

At times, that pain created a kind of closeness that satisfied me in a wonderful way, because it had so much ruined love at its center. The book just winds tighter and tighter. Translation: Page turner. Very well done, Ms.Thomas!

The power balances and tensions are so beautifully wound up and tightened that some readers may feel certain aspects of the very end careen too easily in comparison. [select TEXT to see spoiler here] This is partly because a key moment of Gigi’s risky/scary/triumphant end gesture is told, rather than played out. She appears at Camden’s dinner, vulnerable, going all out, and this: “There’d been much surreptitious necktie-loosening when she—later, in private—unmistakably commanded him to shag her blind. . . No other woman came anywhere near him for the rest of the evening.” This is a small complaint. It’s just that there were so many great palm-sweaty moments, I wanted the full experience of that one, too.

But I’m being greedy. On a lesser book, it would be fine. More than fine. And the ending on the whole is grand and vivid either way—I think people will really like it. All in all, this is an immensely satisfying and exciting read.


Sarai said...

Oh yeah this book is coming to me this week BABY Gawd it sounds wonderful! I can't wait to dig in. I just finished Magic Burns and need to post a review tonight THAT BOOK HAD SOME LOL MOMENTS Lord. Still chuckling.
Glad you liked it gives me hope I will too.

bettie said...

I found the torture of this book to be absolutely exquisite—secret longings, touches that burn, the pain of a destroyed relationship that still lives.

That's it--that's it, exactly! I usually think of myself as the sort of reader who hates angst and drama in books. But, no, I love the drama, I just hate it when it's done badly (Like, for instance, when the drama is because Hero mistakenly thinks Heroine is a dirty filthy hoor). The wrong at the center of this story is no mistake, no Big Misunderstanding, it is a serious betrayal of trust the characters must overcome. This book balances angst, longing, and drama so well, it paints each character so vividly that their totally irrational actions make sense--it's marvellous.

Carolyn Crane said...

Sarai: I'm going to go check for that post!

Bettie: Well said! The thing about this book is it's not a big misunderstanding, the problem is real. I like that so much better than the misunderstanding.

Vicki said...

Hey, just wanted to let you know Julie Leto is doing a great giveaway everyday this week over on the Plotmonkeys Blog

Each day she is giving a chapter of her new book Phantom Pleasure (which will be 7 chapters in all, just enough to make you begging for more) and also each day she is giving away a $20 gift card to

Check it out. :D

lisabea said...

Just passing through. Nothing to add. ::whistling and looking about::

Shannon said...

OK, that's it. Now all of you have read this book and loved it. It is going on The List. Dang it! This book blog of mine was supposed to help me shrink my TBR pile, not increase it exponentially.

Carolyn Crane said...

Hey Vicki, thanks for the tip!
Shannon, good luck on shrinking that TBR pile. Mine is growing like crazy.

Stacy~ said...

I absolutely loved this book. You said in a few words what it took my whole blog post to say.

Carolyn Crane said...

Stacy, that is such a kind compliment. Thanks so much for visiting and saying that.