It was very difficult for me to give this book a 3-stars rating and NOT enlist it in my 'cherished'
shelf, the story itself being the main reason for this. The characters in the book are incredibly vain, venal even who are themselves responsible for the creation of the demons which haunt them throughout their lives. So I found it hard to work up any empathy for either Tony Webster or Adrian Finn or Veronica Ford or their messed up lives.
I understand that much of the appeal of this book lies in its unreliable narrator and the way his own head conjures up distorted versions of events to justify his own actions. But my tremendous hatred for all the characters ruined my enjoyment of it. Not to mention I felt the story should have been longer to make a much greater impact on the reader.
The better parts of the book are the beautifully melancholic narration, the sense of profound nostalgia and regret that the writer is able to arouse in the reader, the elegant prose and the beautifully done opening.