Thursday, March 15, 2012

Review: In the King's Arms, Sonia Taitz

Lily Taub is the brilliant, beautiful and headstrong American daughter of Holocaust survivors. Seeking relief from their traumatized world, Lily escapes to Oxford University, where she meets Julian Aiken, the black sheep of an aristocratic English family. When Lily is invited to the family’s ancestral home over Christmas vacation, her deepening romance with young Julian is crossed by a shocking accident that affects them all. Julian must face the harsh disapproval of his anti-Semitic family, who consider Lily a destructive force, not only in Julian’s life, but to their own sense of order. In the King's Arms is a lyrical, literary novel about the healing possibility of love. Goodreads

I really wanted to love this book. Sonia Taitz’s writing style is so lyrical and flowing that it is easy to get swept away in the imagery. But In The King’s Arms claims to be a novel. In my opinion it was much more like a drawn out poem. An entire semester flies by in barely a chapter, the main characters are desperately in love and locking lips within two pages, and I couldn’t help but feel that I’d missed something.
While Taitz spends a great deal of time describing sights and smells, she glazes over the lovers’ late night conversations with a simple “they sat whispering together.” To which I wanted to shout “what are they whispering ABOUT?”
I didn’t really connect with any of the characters, simply because I wasn’t given enough time to get to know them. There are a few random memories from Lily’s childhood scattered throughout the book, but they seldom connected with the main story and left me confused.
In the King’s Arms does have some bright spots. It does a beautiful job of highlighting how easy it is to allow fear and prejudice create terrible misunderstandings. And that prejudice is often a two-way street, requiring both parties to work towards a solution.
Rating 2.5 stars

YA notes: Some strong language, sexual refrences

Book provided by BookDivas

No comments:

Post a Comment