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The House of Velvet and Glass Hardcover – April 10, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
But anyhow, moving on to the House of Velvet and Glass. It's a little darker than The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane, but I absolutely couldn't put it down. I am working on a PhD in History and my dissertation considers some of the same kinds of people that Howe writes about (disillusioned Boston Brahmins) and I have to say that she does a fantastic job presenting this class accurately and without resorting to the kinds of cliches that often accompany fictional accounts of "old" American money.
I will be buying three more copies for Christmas.
This is certainly an interesting read. There are many wonderful moments written in a manner that can't be faulted. I was, however, left a little disappointed. The troubling thing is that I'm not exactly sure why I felt kind of neutral throughout the book. It might be that Sybil, the protagonist, is not as fully realized as I would have wanted. She never comes to life in a believable manner. Sometimes the setting overwhelms the characters themselves, the lushness shadowing them to the point where the reader stops paying attention to who is speaking, instead focusing on all the richly detailed, if cloying, details.
It might also be that the book is too long. I can't understand, in all honesty, what purpose the scenes that take place in the Titanic serve. They don't do much to advance the story, or for character development, so I don't know why they weren't cut. It wouldn't have simplified the novel, just made it tighter, more cohesive.
It's not a bad book; it's not a great book. It's one of those in-between ones that are so hard to recommend. In one hand, I think that a lot of historical fiction lovers will enjoy it, and on the other I have to think that some, like me, will be underwhelmed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I remember reading and liking THE PHYSICK BOOK OF DELIVERANCE DANE even though it was a bit heavy-handed. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Donna C
The House of Velvet and Glass
This is an interesting and pleasant book. It captures a city (Boston) and a time period (early 20th Century, with recollections of the late 19th... Read more
It puts you in the time period of 1912, when the Titanic sank. Incredible imagery.Published 7 months ago by Judy
I enjoyed this book. I have read Ms. Howe's other books, and enjoyed them as well. I see a definite development of her writing style, and hope she continues with her historical... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Ruth F
I really liked the story. It was very reminiscent of the early 1900's. I loved the stuff about the opium dens. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Bohemian reader
Loved it. Another great book from Howe. Lost in time while reading it!Published 11 months ago by Sara A. Turner
Slow does not describe it , Glacial , is closer like the one the iceberg broke off of .Published 12 months ago by Kevin OHare