An Awfully Big Adventure Paperback – Feb 6 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
This novel of the theater scene in 1950s Liverpool follows a young actress who becomes romantically involved with a director.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A subtle schizophrenic insight into adult relationships ... Bainbridge's understated prose and obsessive eye for the smallest and most telling of details have never been better employed―TIME OUT
Vintage bittersweet Bainbridge―MAIL ON SUNDAY
Imagine Priestley's THE GOOD COMPANIONS as written by Gogol and you will have some idea of the mixture of waggish humour and sordid pathos in Bainbridge's novel―SUNDAY TIMES
Top Customer Reviews
The book is hard to categorize. It isn't a coming-of-age, a psychological thriller, a dazzling Peter Pan parable; it is all these things and more.
Stella raised in blue-collar, post WWII Liverpool is a troubled and troubling 15-year old who determinedly washed out of school and has been fixed up as a "student" (read gofer) at a provincial repertory company. She has no particular acting ambitions, but is certain she would be very good at it. We get a many-sided view of Stella; as she sees herself and as she is perceived by the people around her. Every scene and every word of dialogue interlocks like a jeweled timepiece. The reader is almost unaware of the ever-increasing momentum until it crashes upon you in a chilling finale. You think Ms. Bainbridge is through with you, but not quite. Just when you think you are utterly and completely emotionally drained, Ms. Bainbridge delivers a final twist, and now you know you are. I was left stunned.
An excellent example of fine prose. Highly recommended.
An elaborate variation on Barrie's children's book in a grown-up-too-soon world, the novel combines with seeming effortlessness the youth's innocence and the wisdom and power of love of experience.
A young girl, accepted into the theatrical troupe of a small English town, finds herself enamoured of the stern mysterious director, unaware of the fact that his affections lie in the direction of his own sex and whose major characteristic is making everyone around him as miserable as he feels, trapped in unrequited love. She is indifferent to a great actor, who returns to his home town after becoming world-renowned and who, despite the great difference in their age, feels very close to her. She leaves him only to lead his investigation of her prior life to a tragic secret...
Read the book. You'll be surprised and, as variations on children's books are supposed to do, it'll make you older...
Most recent customer reviews
Stella that I could relate to. It's a quick read and definitely worth picking up. It's a very secretive book, much like its heroine. She's a strange one.Published on Oct. 30 2003
This is a phenomenal book- but it is crucial to approach it with the right mindset. This is not a light comedy, or a fantasy about the joys and agonies of growing up. Read morePublished on Dec 9 2001 by Zack Handlen
I read this book expecting something more lighthearted,perhaps,But jeeze,this was depressing! The author obviously is down on the theatrical world(I read on the jacket cover she... Read morePublished on Aug. 23 2000 by Robyn Lee Markow