Position:Literary - Book review


History in the making.

In this sweeping family saga, three generations of free-spirited Englishwomen eschew traditions and family expectations to seek love and fulfillment on their own terms. After a chance meeting, aristocratic Lorna discards her life of wealth and privilege to marry Matt, a penniless artist, in 1935. Their daughter, Molly, must choose between financial security and independence in the turbulent 1960s when the father of her child, a man she doesn't love, asks her to marry him. Molly's daughter, Ruth, leaves her own disappointing marriage in the 1980s and eventually finds hope and inspiration in the great love story of her grandparents.

Viking. 258 pages. $24.95. ISBN: 0670038563



"Consequences offers that rare experience of utter contentment, an experience that has nothing to do with whether what you're reading is happy or sad, and everything to do with feeling that you're in the hands of a master. ... The word 'consequences' here is not meant as anything portentous or tragic--even though there are moments in the book that affected me so much I had to put it down before I could keep reading--but the course of life." CHARLES TAYLOR

NY Times Book Review EXCELLENT

"Consequences, despite its shadows, is also a joyous ever-widening dance. At is center shimmers the idea of resiliency, of the continuity of humankind as embodied in one family, shattered and reconstituted, fragile, stubborn, enduring." NANCY KLINE

Toronto Globe and Mail EXCELLENT

"Conjuring up people, places and events both public and private, it draws us into its magic circle, as if we were intimate friends, even family, of the lovers who people this beautifully written, finely constructed narrative. ... There is so much to admire and enjoy in both the content and style of Consequences--including Lively's virtuoso recreation of the temper and even the colloquialisms of the 1930s, the swinging '60s and Thatcherite 80's--that it seems churlish to complain that the latter sections of the novel don't quite sustain the magic of its opening." JANICE KULYK KEEFER

Wall Street Journal EXCELLENT

"The span of time covered in Consequences is that of Ms. Lively's own life (she was born in 1933), and in her matchlessly spare prose she anatomizes the epochal changes that have transformed the English landscape and culture in those 70-odd years. Her greatest gift, though, is her ability to see beyond mere cultural ephemera and grasp...

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