The Vicar’s Wife Katharine Swartz~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ February 6th, 2014

When I was sent the email to review this book, I decided to give it a try based on the title and the cover.

It looked interesting and perhaps a bit different from book I’d read recently.

Here’s a description:

A powerful drama of domestic life following two memorable women who shared a house eighty years apart.

A New Yorker all her life, Jane Hatton loved her job as the head of a charity championing women’s rights, but her fourteen year- old daughter, Natalie, had fallen in with the wrong crowd at her Manhattan school. So Jane and her British husband, Andrew, have decided to move their family to the English countryside.

The Hattons have bought the large old vicarage in a small village on the Cumbrian coast, near Andrea’s new job. The silence and solitude of a remote village is quite a change.

Natalie hates her new school, and eleven-year-old Ben struggles academically. Only seven-year-old Merrie enjoys country life. Has Jane made a horrible mistake? What of her career? Her own identity? Putting on a brave face for the family, Jane tackles renovating the rambling, drafty old house.

When she finds a scrap of a very old shopping list, she grows curious about Alice, the vicar’s wife who lived there years before. As the twin narratives unfolds–of Jane in the present and Alice in the 1930’s–we discover that both are on a journey to discover their true selves, and to address their deepest fears.

My thoughts:

I really liked the twin stories going back and forth between Jane  in the present day and Alice the Vicar’s wife who lived in the same house 80 years before.

This story isn’t a typical Christian fiction book in that there’s not a huge spiritual theme or lesson in it.

I found myself wishing Alice’s story had been different and wishing that the author would have told more of her story than Jane’s.

As the book continued, I’ll be honest, I got a little tired of Jane bemoaning her new life in England. I don’t know her selfishness and “not being fulfilled since she wasn’t working” just got to be old.

However, as I thought about it, I guess a character that leaves you wanting to give her a good shake is a well written character isn’t it?

I found myself thinking about the story a lot and wondering what would happen as I read.

If you’re looking for a new book, perhaps you’d like to give this one a try!

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Kregel Publications in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own.


2 Thoughts Shared to The Vicar’s Wife Katharine Swartz~Book Review

  1. Barbara H.

    Sounds like a good one!

  2. Robin in New Jersey

    Thanks for the review. I have been looking for a new book to read. I’ll check at the library and see if they have it.

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