Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Book review: Rich well of talent

By Nicky Pellegrino  - Herald on Sunday July 28, 2013    

Sarah Laing has come up with a humorous and enjoyable novel

Sarah Laing has come up with a humorous and enjoyable novel
Some people are blessed with more than their fair share of talents, Sarah Laing among them. Not only did this New Zealand author design the striking cover for her new novel, The Fall Of Light (Vintage), but she produced the illustrations depicting her main character's dream life.

And while clearly she has a visual take on the world, Laing's prose isn't clogged with elaborate, descriptive passages. If anything, it falls towards being pared down and economical, with more richness in its people and themes than its settings.

The Fall of Light is the story of Rudy, an Auckland architect in his 40s who is standing on the rubble of his life trying to work out how to rebuild it. The wife he loves has left him because she can no longer cope with family coming second to his work. His children are growing up and his relationship with them is changing.

Plus Rudy is constantly frustrated by colleagues and clients who don't share his creative vision and are preventing him from producing a groundbreaking building that will bring international renown.
Rudy is a bit of a tosser, to be honest, the stereotypical architect who doesn't listen to his clients and is vain, snobbish and self-obsessed. But Laing endows him with the one characteristic that saves him: immense vulnerability.

Full review

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