A Change of Season

Suzanne Goodwin, Author St. Martin's Press $24.95 (568p) ISBN 978-0-312-06923-0
The ponderous seventh novel by British author Goodwin ( To Love a Hero ) offers a wealth of background on post-WW II England and on Stratford-upon-Avon's theatrical world, but the slow pace neutralizes the adroitly sketched settings and realistic characters. After the war, Lisa Whitfield and her brother Charles return from Burma and India, where they've spent years at his army post, to find a morally changed and economically impoverished society. Struggling to make ends meet--a difficult task, given Charles's gambling urges--they return to hometown Stratford. Romantic complications form the bulk of the plot as Charles's womanizing leads him to pursue, marry and cheat on the 17-year-old daughter of a family friend. Lisa's long-lost love from Calcutta resurfaces, now married to a prominent Shakespearean actress. Lisa is a strong and admirable heroine--when she isn't subjugating her own wishes to those of others, especially her brother. Comprehensive descriptions of all that occurs in Stratford and in Lisa's mind effectively remove suspense from the plot twists; the predictable happy ending ties up all loose ends. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/03/1992
Release date: 02/01/1992
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