Wednesday, March 11, 2009
A Partisan's Daughter - Louis de Bernieres
Years ago, I read and fell in love with Corelli's Mandolin. So, I was interested to pick up de Bernieres's most recent novel, which has received a great deal of praise. A Partisan's Daughter takes place in London and is a sexually obsessed love story told from the alternating first-person perspectives of Chris, an unhappily married man, and Roza, a Yugoslavian immigrant who Chris initially mistakes for a prostitute. As the two spend increasing amounts of time together, Chris fancies their relationship as a budding romance. Roza's motives are a little more difficult to discern. She strings him along telling him stories from her past, fearing that he will lose interest if her stories are not shocking enough. Yet, Roza does not seem particularly to like Chris, rather viewing him as a toy to manipuate and deceive. While neither of the characters in this novel are likeable, the writing maintained my interest and I was eager to find out what, if anything, would come of the relationship. Plot-wise, this is a much less sophisticated endeavor than Corelli's Mandolin, but it was an interesting exploration of two people from different backgrounds dealing with the loneliness and uncertainty of life.