Vollands

Pamela Hill, Author St. Martin's Press $15.95 (186p) ISBN 978-0-312-05989-7
The prolific British author packs the melodramatic demise of a 19th-century English family into this thin historical novel. After her husband's bankruptcy and subsequent suicide, Anna Volland and her eight children rely on the generosity of her wealthy uncle Hubert. But the benefactor's death leaves Anna's sadistic eldest son, James, in charge of the clan. Hubert's corpse is barely cold when James rapes the deceased's beautiful bastard daughterstet no comma Jenny, whose illegitimate son later vows to avenge his mother's shame. Hill's turgid prose offers a grim catalogue of deaths; war, childbirth, simple accidents and broken hearts lay claim to Volland lives. But it's difficult to summon up much sympathy for the star-crossed family. The women are mostly passive objects to be bartered and ``ravished,'' vessels for bearing male heirs, while the men are cold, calculating brutes. As she hopscotches across three generations of Vollands, Hill forgets to add depth to her characterizations, resulting in a pantomine devoid of all emotion. (July)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1991
Release date: 07/01/1991
Hardcover - 293 pages - 978-0-7089-2577-5
Show other formats
FORMATS
Discover what to read next
TIP SHEET
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X
X