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But with The Spa, the plot in its own entity was quite enjoyable. So go grab The Spa today, I can guarantee that you won't regret it. I think it must say something about contemporary fiction or my take on it at least that I found this incredibly refreshing in its feminist take on women's lives. The conceit is well known that a group of very successful women swap tales of their lives in an upmarket spa but I found this far more funny and acute than I expected.

It could be that the opening, a tale of adultery told to the narrator by her hairdresser, is less accidental than we think. Weldon taps into that bitchy but indu I think it must say something about contemporary fiction or my take on it at least that I found this incredibly refreshing in its feminist take on women's lives. Weldon taps into that bitchy but indulgent female pastime of listening to the latest gossip, the downfall of acquaintances, the schadenfreude that comes from the observing the sport of our neighbours.

The spa setting expands on this, also being a place of female transformation and possibility where femaleness is both closely scrutinized and essentially liminal. The tales themselves take a while to warm up and though always dark but amusing, those nearer the end seem more effective than others. The explicit Brain Surgeon's Tale takes a pair of brainy twins on a quest to the pub for sex that sees them hilariously dumbing down to their prey's level, like a pair of anthropologists attempting contact with a primitive tribe.

The Ex-Vicar's Wife's tale is an amusing but sad ghost story about disappointment and anger. But like many reviewers my favourite is the final Step-Mother's tale, a reverse Cinderella about a nightmare, incestuously minded step-daughter. I found it hard to get through The Spa. It is written in the Style of Olive Kitteredge, or a Maeve Binchy novely, where you get to hear the individual stories of all of these people who happen to land on the same bus, the same trip to Italy, the same Spa, or happen to know or relate to the same depressive neighbor in a town, at different times in her life.

I found it disjointed, and ultimately not memorable.

The Spa by Fay Weldon

And you never really get a sense of the main and central character who narrates the book I found it hard to get through The Spa. And you never really get a sense of the main and central character who narrates the book.

She doesn't grow, learn, nor share. She just exists to relay these stories that disappear as soon as they are heard, which is a parallel to the book. After having finished the Jacket, by Andrew Clemens, which I read to facilitate for a group of fourth graders tomorrow night on an evening of challenging racism, I now turn to what the library has turned up. Psyched to read "The Historian" which was lent to me by a patient, and sits on my night table waiting for the library to run dry for me, or seemingly for my baby to be born.

Funny I think for a patient to lend me a book called "The Historian," as so much of my work is the weaving of history with the present with a narrator. I can't wait to see what it might mean, as well as enjoy the read.

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My non readers of this semi blog attempt that is read by no one - what are you reading now? Jul 08, Denise Mitchell rated it liked it. When I started reading this book I honestly didn't think I would get through to the end. However, it ended up being one of those books you have to keep reading - just to find out what happens next. A group of professional women end up in a spa over the festive season and each one has a story to tell but,CBS warned, this book is not chick-lit.

The stories are mainly dark and harrowing and each one tells the tale of how the woman telling the story has become the person she is today. The When I started reading this book I honestly didn't think I would get through to the end. The story is told from the point of view of one of the women who is holidaying at the spa.

There are stories of murder, intrigue, jealousy and ghosts to name but a few topics. The story was a lot darker and heavier than I initially expected it to be however, although it wasn't my favourite book or my normal reading material, I still quite enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading about other women's lives.

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Oct 19, Rosalind Minett rated it liked it. I can't believe I closed the book and gave it away half read - a Fay Weldon. Normally I read her books for the kind of relaxed amusement that leaves you satisfied. She provides tremendous amusement with her wicked take on characters and their incidents, but while laughing and enjoying the read you are full of admiration for her skill.

My version of this book is called The Spa Decameron, showing her intent.

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It didn't quite come off and by the middle of the book the extremes of the stor I can't believe I closed the book and gave it away half read - a Fay Weldon. It didn't quite come off and by the middle of the book the extremes of the stories became just annoying.

My belief was suspended only a whisker above the ground. The Spa is a later story.

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The writer seemed tired and forcing herself to press on. This is not to say there are no laughs, there are. The book is spoiled mainly as result of reading Weldon's earlier works. Only a 3! But that's the verdict. The Decameron , written by Giovanni Boccaccio, in about is a collection of novellas, arranged as a story about a group of women and men escaping the plague in Florence, and staying in the countryside, each telling stories for the others' amusement.


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Weldon's Spa Decameron tells of a group of women spending the Christmas break at a spa. Treatments are limited, staff keep disappearing, and the women loll in the jacuzzi and tell each other the stories of their lives. In this way, it is somewhat like a c The Decameron , written by Giovanni Boccaccio, in about is a collection of novellas, arranged as a story about a group of women and men escaping the plague in Florence, and staying in the countryside, each telling stories for the others' amusement.

In this way, it is somewhat like a collection of short stories, although there's is a connecting narrative by a woman who never tells her story , and the women interject into each other stories with ribald comments or questions. Some of the stories are great, one was dull, some were puzzling - as a whole, an enjoyable read, and a good book to pick up and put down in between reading other novels.

Royal Decameron Indigo Beach Resort & Spa in Haiti - The Boatmen.

Not what I expected from Fay Weldon, who I remember as being light and cynical at the same time, funny and real, with dashes of wit. Here, a borrowed-from-Boccaccio-and-Chaucer series of tales of social roles--not names of people, but roles they play in society is these women's ID. I can't remember anybody's name, much less their story. Jim Delaney from North River. So far Fay is forgettable.

But Out Not what I expected from Fay Weldon, who I remember as being light and cynical at the same time, funny and real, with dashes of wit.

source But, I'll read on. Finished as fast as I could and remember little--very much of a downer, angry-at-men stories, miserable women, nothing works but it could have been funny, it could have been touching, it could have been fun--it's a SPA, after all. Huge disappointment of a book.

This book was given to me at a bookswap with the guarantee, that I would be able to relate to the characters. Definitely not. Instead, I found a book that was humoristic mostly thanks to its absurd set of characters and unbelievable storylines. This was enough for the beginning of the book, but towards the end, it started to be too repetitive, and I was already tiring of the "This is how all women act"-cliches that didn't ring true to me at all. The worst was the storyt This book was given to me at a bookswap with the guarantee, that I would be able to relate to the characters.


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The worst was the storyteller, the voice present throughout the book. I just wanted to shake her and tell her to snap out of it. I couldn't enjoy this novel as much as I would have liked because the print is so small! I read the paperback, and I am wondering what the publishers are thinking - of course, to save money - but it is not easy to read print which must be TNR I found myself skipping pages because it was just too much of a strain on my eyes.