Saturday, January 07, 2012

The English Air

I think I found this lovely older British novel on the front lawn of someone's yard sale late last summer. I had recognized the Scottish author, D.E. Stevenson from Lanier's lovely summer post. (Btw, her site is one of the most beautiful places on the web. If you want to learn how to cultivate beauty, go, read and do likewise. smile.)

I started to read The English Air on Sunday, New Year's Day afternoon and read it at every chance until I was done sometime on Tuesday. It was written in 1940 and it takes place starting one year before that which was, of course the official beginning of World War 2. I checked the publisher's date after I finished the book and I was struck by how insightful her writing seemed since the war had only just begun. The novel is about a half-German, half-English young man who comes to England to visit family friends of his deceased English mother. And without sounding too cliche, nothing is what it really seems. The characters come across very shallow and trivial, but as the story progresses, they are given depth and interest. I have not read a novel in a long time that held my attention and captured my thoughts even after I was finished reading it. It was a great way to start my new reading year.

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