The Minotaur

The Minotaur

Paperback - 2005
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Secrets and lies in a proper English family lead to murder in this twelfth novel written under Ruth Rendell's pen name, as a sympathetic Swedish woman remembers her strange and horrifying stay at an old Essex house almost forty years before.
Publisher: Toronto : Penguin Canada, 2005.
ISBN: 9780143052074
Characteristics: 310 pages ;,21 cm.


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Mar 03, 2015

I really enjoyed this book with all it's colourful characters.
lots of twists and turns in the plot and a good ending.

xaipe Jun 18, 2014

Modern Gothic set in a gloomy countryside mansion in a remote part of Essex. The story takes place in the 1960's. The narrator, a Swedish woman named Kerstin Kvist whose first name is pronounced "Shashtin" (?), is a trained nurse who accepts a position caring for John who is most probably profoundly autistic in an era before this was a diagnosis. Other characters are the pathologically domineering matriarch, 2 middle aged love-starved sisters who vie for the local vicar's and local artist's attentions, and a third sister who has a mysterious background and whose paternity is questionable. Add a vast library which is constructed like a labyrinthine maze where John loves to hide and you have "The Woman in White" and "Jane Eyre" to complete the Victorian genre. Barbara Vine's sly observations of British mannerisms and customs make this a very stylish novel. In other less capable hands, it would have been a potboiler, but it was fun to read even though there were no ripped bodices.

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