HOW IT ALL BEGAN by Penelope Lively

HOW IT ALL BEGANThe other day, I arrived in DC an hour early for a lunch meeting, so naturally I wandered into KramerBooks, a place I can only describe as Heaven.  In short: piles and piles of thoughtfully-selected books.

There I found HOW IT ALL BEGAN, Penelope Lively’s engaging novel about several British characters whose lives intersect and are in various ways affected after one of them, an older lady named Charlotte, gets mugged.  The action rotates through different perspectives, and the shifting camera reminded me of how Tolstoy (particularly in ANNA KARENINA) follows the characters like a cameraman.  If someone is mentioned when two people are talking, the narration turns to that third person.

I don’t want to give too much away.  This book is a great escape, and even though I certainly had other things to do, I read it in one day.  The tone is generally witty and light, but it will make you think about how we all influence one another and how sometimes unfortunate incidents turn out to have positive consequences.


About OnlyGoodBooks

Creator of The Literacy Cookbook (, I am an educational consultant who also happens to love to read incessantly. I found myself referring friends to so many books that it seemed like time to create a blog to record all of these recommendations. So here it is.
This entry was posted in Fiction, Novel and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s