The Awakening of Claudia Faraday by Patsy Trench
ABOUT THE BOOK
It got better, in time, though to be truthful it always felt more of a duty than a pleasure: a little like homework, satisfying when over, and done well, but never exactly enjoyable. But then nobody had ever suggested it could be otherwise.
This was the view of Claudia Faraday, 1920s respectable wife and mother of three, on the subject of sex. That is until an unexpected turn of events shakes her out of her torpor and propels her back into the world revitalised and reawakened, where she discovers, as Marie Stopes might have said: Approached in the right way, even homework can be fun.
Welcome to the Roaring 20s! When a middle-aged empty nester takes a look at her lonely and unexciting life, she opens her mind and her body to new experiences.
Claudia is a lonely, and surprisingly passionate person. Having followed society’s rules as a loving wife and doting mother, she is left alone to deal with an empty house and a “husband who did not think about her, was not interested in her or what went on in her life”. What is a woman of a certain age to do? When a young friend of her husband visits her and stays the night, her eyes are opened to new pleasures she has never known which begins a new journey of finding herself. Who can blame her wanting to enjoy life in the 20s where everything is changing: fashion, hairstyles, new identities, and the joys of sex? Even her own daughters are experimenting and enjoying life in their own unique ways.
Claudia is not a likable person but the reader will see her change and unwind slowly to become more aware of what is around her and what she wants giving the reader hope that she may make the right decision.
Overall, this is an intriguing and philosophical look into a woman’s awakening after being what society wanted from her all of her life. I didn’t know if I was going to like it at first, but I cheered for Claudia and was unexpectedly happy with her choice at the end.
Thank you to Ms. Trench for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Patsy Trench lives a quiet and largely respectable life in north London. Claudia’s story shows a side of her normally shy and reserved nature that is little known, even to her friends and acquaintances. Her previous books, about her family’s history in Australia, are entertaining and informative accounts of that country’s early colonial beginnings. She began writing late, and in a previous life, she was an actress, scriptwriter, playscout, founder of The Children’s Musical Theatre of London, and lyricist. When not writing books she emerges from her shell to teach theatre and organise theatre trips for overseas students. She is the grateful mother of two clever and grown-up children, and she is addicted to rag rugging and, when current circumstances permit, fossicking on the Thames foreshore for ancient treasure.
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