Context: Visited Yarm High St on Teesside in the UK while reading this. The free parking there is now a distant memory.
Perhaps the most forgettable, for me, of the four volumes so far.Having nearly completed two more memorable volumes since finishing this one off, I had to go back to the web to remind myself of exactly what took place.
Marriage is in the air for a few key characters and Nick reflects on that quite a bit. There’s also a fairly dramatic dissolution of a marriage as well.
Overall however, this is more about discussions between characters than events that occur. There are long stretches of conversation over dinner which involve art, literature and politics to a lesser extent.
This is definitely an essential novel in the series, but it’s not a stand out episode by any means.
We had known General Conyers immemorially not because my father had ever served under him but through some long-forgotten connexion with my mother’s parents, to one or other of whom he may even have been distantly related.
Marriage as I have said, is a form of action, of violence almost: an assertion of the will. Its orbit is not to be charted with precision, if misrepresentation and contrivance are to be avoided. Its facts can perhaps only be known by implication. It is a state from which all objectivity has been removed.Nothing disturbs feeling so much as thinking.Got to have a plan, of course, but no use in knotting yourself up in it too tight.[War is] not an exact science, but a terrible and passionate drama. Something like that. In fact, marriage is rather like that too.
This might reveal the ending. If you want to see the quote, click show
I have thought about the subject a good deal, and you are always welcome to my views.
I’ll not be rating each individual volume of the novel but will give the novel a rating after finishing volume 12.