Newest Review: ... one I wonder how much of their relationship is mirrored in the story. When I first picked up this book there was nothing in the title or... more
Don't scratch that itch
The Seven Year Itch - Emlyn Rees
Member Name: CPTDANIELS
The Seven Year Itch - Emlyn Rees
Advantages: Good view of a modern marriage issues.
Disadvantages: One concept I struggled with.
==Synopsis of the book:==
Jack and Amy have been married for seven years. They have generally been happy, but are they starting now they are in their thirties to drift apart? They have a two year old son Ben. Jacks works at a landscape Gardener while Amy is a full time Housewife and Mother.
Recently they seem to argue more and in some areas they want different things. For example Amy would love to have another Child, while Jack is against it. He sees money being tight and no possibility at present of moving from their two bedroom flat. And while Amy supports Jack in all his work endeavours, she feels with support from him she could consider a return to the work place. As while she enjoys being a Mum she finds it at times unrewarding and her circle of friends she calls "The Vipers" as being very competitive and cold.
==My thoughts on the novel:==
I thought this was an interesting and good piece of romantic fiction. The style I would compare to an author such as Tony Gayle. It was a story that had many enjoyable attributes, at times it was funny, happy, sad and demonstrated how misunderstandings can and do happen between couples. How a gesture can be misunderstood while other nice ones not noticed in a long term relationship.
This book was written by husband and wife team Josie Lloyd and Emlyn Rees. They are both successful authors in their own right, but have also written together as well before. As in 1998 they wrote the opening novel in this series 'Come Together' about Amy and Jack. Now nine years later they have followed it up with this story. Certainly for me having read and enjoyed this one I wonder how much of their relationship is mirrored in the story.
When I first picked up this book there was nothing in the title or the style it was written in that appealed to me. What did appeal however was in small writing the following line 'At last! The naked truth about what it is like to married'. It appealed possibly because I have never married and it always impresses and amazes me that people can want to be together for life. Not only that but married couples fascinate me how despite being together for sometimes many years they can still have views and opinions that are poles apart on some subjects.
So I flipped the book over and checked out the unusual summary which really sold the book to me. Unlike the usual 3 paragraph summary most novels have this one had a introduction to Jack and his views on fatherhood. Next to it was Amy's introduction and her opinion on motherhood. I really liked the concept this alluded to that we would see these two characters view on a day to day basis on things that happened in their lives.
When I started the story I found it very easy to get into the into. I liked the way we would have for example ten pages on what was happening to Amy and how she felt about it. Then very clearly we would catch up with Jack and his opinion on recent developments. And while I liked this I also found it slightly annoying as he would have a few days of Amy's views and then this would be followed a few days later with Jack's. Some might like this approach but at times I found I wanted to know what the other partner was thinking at the same time not days later. As a result it felt a little disjointed but at the same time it did successfully keep the story moving forward.
That said I did like the way the story developed. It was always well thought out and I liked also the way it did not develop like I expected. For me the subject matter was very realistic and both writers seemed very in touch with what it was like to have been married with a child after several years together. I enjoyed the wit and humour within the story, particularly when it came from the couples two tear old son.
I found the further into the story I went the more involved in it I felt. There was one big concept however that I found unbelievable and rather unlikely that I could not get my head round that slightly spoilt what was a very well thought out and always interesting story. I won't give it away be telling you though. However it did demonstrate different attitudes men and woman have on that subject.
As I say the further into the better it got. And unlike a lot of fictional stories I have read lately the pace and level of excitement really increased as the conclusion was reached. I had no idea what would happen at the end and I was on the edge of my seat hoping that it would all end up happy but no idea if it was possible, given what had happened previously. I for one would like to see what happens next to both Amy and Jack.
In many ways I expected Jack and Amy's views and opinion to be very different demonstrating the differences between the sexes. However they were not as different as I expected. I thought the authors could have exploited more misunderstandings between the two lead characters or indeed their friends. It was from my viewpoint realistic whereas I expected it to be extreme and from this point of view I felt maybe a trick had been missed.
The two lead characters were unsurprisingly Amy and Jack. I thought they were good characters and I enjoyed learning all about them and their views of what was happened around them. I enjoyed it most when they were interacting with each other as this was where the difference between the sexes was most clearly exposed. Out of the two I found Amy's views and opinion more understandable so I tended to prefer it when the focus was on her.
For me the length of the story was just right to tell and absorbing story. This is because the story was full of insight into the characters lives and had a good level of depth within it. For me it was the type of story that was easy to read, while it didn't tax me too much I enjoyed some of the excellent perspectives the authors shared and I think I learnt a little about the woman's view to boot.
On balance I would recommend this as a good piece of romantic fiction. I liked the way the authors tried to share Amy and Jacks viewpoint to changing developments in their relationship. The story also had an exciting conclusion to it which I had not expected. However for me it was far from perfect and I was bothered by one of the unlikely concept the authors introduced which I found hard to swallow.
Year first published: 2007
Thanks for reading my review.
This review is published under my user name on both Ciao and Dooyoo.
© CPTDANIELS October 2012.
Summary: Interesting story