Thursday 1 March 2018

A Question of Trust by Penny Vincenzi

Penny Vincenzi - how do I describe my relationship with her books? In one word - intense. In a phrase - "pleasure to my soul". A sentence...or two - I'm entranced by a world so different, where people are so fascinating and the plot is so surprising, that I just can't stop reading. It's like crack cocaine. 

A Question of Trust has all the ingredients (as per Goodreads) -  "vintage Penny Vincenzi: rich with characters, life-changing decisions, glamour, love, desire and conflict.

1950s London. Tom Knelston is charismatic, working class and driven by ambition, ideals and passion. He is a man to watch. His wife Alice shares his vision. It seems they are the perfect match.

Then out of the blue, Tom meets beautiful and unhappily married Diana Southcott, a fashion model." 

You want more? You'll have to read the book

Sadly, Penny Vincenzi passed away this week, and something struck me as I was reading tributes from those who knew her - especially Clare Alexander, her agent

Her special gift as a novelist was her love for her characters, and that came from her deep interest in not only the people in her imagination, but also in pretty well everyone she ever met.

She had such a generous gift of friendship, quite blind to whether someone was the boss or just making her a cup of tea. And that is why so many people in publishing will be devastated by her loss. Throughout her life – which like everyone’s, had its own tragedies and pitfalls – Penny always looked for hope and joy and the best way forward, which is perhaps why her huge fan base crossed generations and never deserted her. I will miss her every day. She was a storyteller of such natural talent.”

People like Penny inspire me. And I'm glad I found this out about her - even posthumously. There was something about her writing - literary critics may have had a lot to say, but she sold books, because she poured her heart and soul into her writing. And it was a good one. That's a good recipe.


4 stars

Other books by Penny Vincenzi: No Angel, Sheer Abandon, An Absolute Trust and The Best of Times

Or you may also like Commonwealth by Ann Patchett. Or what about Blue Shoe by Ann Lamott?

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