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Reading in Bed by Sue Gee

Reading in Bed (original 2007; edition 2008)

by Sue Gee

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1045116,035 (3.43)3
Title:Reading in Bed
Authors:Sue Gee
Info:Headline Review (2008), Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library, To read
Tags:Fiction, TBR

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Reading in Bed by Sue Gee (2007)




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This book starts off very quietly, telling about two women, life-long friends, who've had the good fortune that their husbands were friends too. They are now approaching 60, both are retired, Georgia's husband has died last year. But she is coping, of course she is.
There are children, grandchildren, the ongoing sorrow of a child lost by cot death, the joy of good health and good steady family relationships.
Yes, life is not like that - at least, never for very long. So very soon this book begins to hurt: the life without your life-long companion is painted a bit too expertly for comfort, and of course relationships are never simple and never just what they seem, and even marriages that have lasted 30 years are no guarantee for further happiness.
The storytelling is great, the characters very well developed, and the subject matter such that it kept me glued to the sofa for a whole Sunday afternoon. A very good book - my only critique being that it comes too close for comfort in its description of life as it really is.” ( )
1 vote mojacobs | Feb 15, 2011 |
I've just finished reading this book and loved every single minute of it. It's the story of Dido and Georgia, friends since university, who happened to marry two men who were also friends with each other. Lovely long marriages ensued, but sadly, as the book opens, Henry, Georgia's husband, has recently passed away. The parts of the book relating to this brought lumps to my throat, not because they were overly emotional scenes, but because they were understated, yet still so moving. At the same time, Dido and Jeffrey have their own problems to deal with.

The book starts with the two women returning from a book festival at Hay on Wye, and throughout the book there are various literary references, which work very well.

There are no speech marks in this book, with all dialogue being indicated by a dash only. For a short time at the beginning it required a little more concentration than usual, but I quickly got used to it and it all flowed so well that I began not to even notice the lack of speech marks.

This is my first Sue Gee book, but it won't be my last. Don't be fooled by the chick-lit style cover - this is a book with real depth and emotion, and I really cared about the characters. Highly recommended. ( )
  nicx27 | Dec 15, 2009 |
This wasn’t the lighthearted read that I was expecting but Gee’s writing pulled me into the lives of the characters and held me there. This is a book about life and death, bereavement, romance and of course, books. Whenever it showed signs of getting a little dark for me, Gee turned it around and lightened it up with her gentle humour. The opening pages take part in Hay on Wye, which is a Mecca for serious book lovers and immediately I was hooked. In this book we meet several characters and families whose lives are all in some way enriched by literature. Gee writes with a great sense of compassion and observation making this book a comforting read – in fact, it would make an ideal bedtime book ( )
2 vote kehs | Jun 26, 2008 |
An enjoyable read. It's a story of two close families going through very stressful times and how they deal with it and their relationships. Gee is at pains to tell you and to illustrate how middle class her characters are and how they fit the stereotype. It seems as though it is a tale written without a plan (which is fine) but then at the end is tided up nicely for us. The mad aunt Maud story is almost a sideline that rarely impinges on the main story. I like the style and would read Gee again. ( )
1 vote happyanddandy1 | Mar 23, 2008 |
Using a narrative that moves from one character to another Sue Gee has created a novel in which you care about the characters so much that you continue to think about them after you have put the book down. Her writing is very poignant - she captures feelings and emotions succinctly - reading about Georgia’s loneliness is quite painful at times and yet this story is not without it’s moments of gentle humour and recognisable family dynamics. I have often shelved The Mysteries of Glass (also by Sue Gee) at work and every time I do it catches my eye - next time I see it I will take it home to read. ( )
2 vote judyb65 | Feb 18, 2008 |
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Opening at the Hay Festival, and ending with the prospect of a spring wedding, this novel is a lively story of tangled relationships and the sustaining powers of good books, loyal friends and conversation.

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