Arab Today, arab today the red house by mark haddon
Last Updated : GMT 12:03:01
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

The Red House by Mark Haddon

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today The Red House by Mark Haddon

London - Arabstoday

W H Auden once asked playfully: \"When life fails/ What\'s the good of going to Wales?\" Mark Haddon\'s The Red House could have been written to answer the question. This hugely enjoyable, sympathetic novel would make perfect reading for those setting out on holiday in Britain – and especially anyone heading for Wales. The most ambitious thing about it is its lack of ambition, its cool decision not to include any dramatic events beyond a twisted ankle on a Welsh hillside, a brush with hypothermia and a controversial kiss between teenage girls. Its agenda is other – it looks at the inner workings of people on holiday and at ordinary unhappiness in many forms – a family variety pack. The cast is extended: Richard, a hospital consultant, comes with smart, attractive, working-class wife, Louisa, and stepdaughter, Melissa, who in spite of a \"glossy thoroughbred look and \"slow-motion hair\", proves – as more than one person will discover – surly and unrewarding to kiss. Richard has invited along his less successful sister, Angela, and her family, as a kindly gesture in the wake of their mother\'s death. Angela\'s husband, Dominic, is unfulfilled and unfaithful. They have three children: athletic Alex, god-fearing Daisy and eight-year-old oddball Benjy. \"Behind everything there is always a house,\" Haddon asserts – which may be straining a point. But he uses the house stylishly to give his novel form, and its walls, and the architecture of a single week, contain the characters at their most chaotic. He registers the way each individual lives, helplessly, under a separate emotional roof. He shows that being in a family is a faltering experiment. And at one point he notes \"how eloquently houses speak, of landscape and weather\". Yet the striking thing about Haddon\'s The Red House is that it is withheld and somehow circumspect. It is a book of minor revelations and slow-release secrets. When Daisy makes her peace with discovering she is gay, she experiences a surge of power – a delicately described moment of self-acceptance. Haddon writes beautifully about Daisy. He turns out to be better on teenagers than on the middle-aged. Perhaps he has more sympathy with them. By far his weakest character is Daisy\'s abject mother, Angela, who cannot let go of grievances about her brother. The grievances themselves are convincing but Angela\'s haunted obsession with a stillborn daughter, Karen – whom she lost 18 years earlier – is implausible. Karen keeps irritatingly gatecrashing what is, in her absence, a more subtle story. Speaking of irritation, Haddon is especially good at the inevitability of it within families. Melissa finds her stepfather\'s habit of doing the crossword in pencil maddening (one sympathises). Angela cannot stick the way her sister-in-law holds a measuring jug up to the light \"as if it were a syringe and life hung in the balance\". And Dominic finds Richard\'s luxuriant crest of black hair an affront. Haddon has a restless sense of the absurd and a genius for shorthand, for packing paragraphs full (take the ground-gobbling opening paragraph about the train journey to Wales). He catches the entire texture of the holiday complete with extracts from books read and words from music listened to – he is a great man for lists. The writing is, at every turn, a tremendous pleasure. And while the novel cannot compete with Haddon\'s one-off bestseller The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, it is still a treat to be part of this Welsh escapade. At the end, Benjy records in the visitors\' book: \"I liked walking up the hill and the rain strom and sheepherds\' pie at the grannery.\" It is a delicious moment because we know that the visitors\' book cannot begin to describe the holiday as it has actually happened. We have been absorbed, entertained and moved by the entry that will never appear: the novel itself.

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today the red house by mark haddon Arab Today, arab today the red house by mark haddon

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Hats, scarves add beauty to women

GMT 19:10 2017 Friday ,17 February

Hats, scarves add beauty to women
Arab Today, arab today Tourism shows signs of recovery

GMT 09:59 2017 Monday ,20 February

Tourism shows signs of recovery
Arab Today, arab today To release new antiques collection

GMT 20:33 2017 Friday ,17 February

To release new antiques collection
Arab Today, arab today Optimism on the front line

GMT 07:24 2017 Monday ,20 February

Optimism on the front line
Arab Today, arab today Murder of 2 reporters in Dominican Republic

GMT 22:45 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Murder of 2 reporters in Dominican Republic

GMT 15:04 2017 Wednesday ,04 January

Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’ becomes German bestseller

GMT 23:50 2016 Thursday ,08 December

UAE is helping the Arab world read more books

GMT 11:07 2016 Monday ,07 November

Sheikh Zayed Book Award announces first longlist

GMT 10:03 2016 Thursday ,13 October

A new illustrated book compares Beirut and New York

GMT 08:55 2016 Sunday ,25 September

Chinese Book Fair kicks off in Kathmandu
View News in Arabic - Culture: مراجعة كتب
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Kidogo provides childcare for underserved

GMT 20:24 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Kidogo provides childcare for underserved
Arab Today, arab today Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed

GMT 06:50 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed
Arab Today, arab today London to tax old cars

GMT 14:06 2017 Friday ,17 February

London to tax old cars
Arab Today, arab today Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons
Arab Today, arab today Competes Sweden and Germans by S90

GMT 22:36 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Competes Sweden and Germans by S90
Arab Today, arab today Porsche reveals new 2018 Panamera

GMT 17:31 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Porsche reveals new 2018 Panamera
Arab Today, arab today Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival

GMT 21:11 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival
Arab Today, arab today Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 20:41 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 07:30 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Actress Nadeen Al Rassi views art as her entity

GMT 06:40 2017 Friday ,10 February

MP calls for removing text from Islamic story

GMT 13:16 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

First fashion model with Down syndrome

GMT 10:26 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

Emergency UN meeting in Harare

GMT 14:04 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

"Lagom" new Swedish concept in interior design

GMT 12:07 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Bite-mimicking malaria vaccine

GMT 19:16 2017 Friday ,17 February

Aziz House ready to host the tourists

GMT 13:12 2015 Saturday ,09 May

Sheikh Sultan opens Sharjah Centre

GMT 21:42 2017 Sunday ,12 February

Rania al-Ghazali designs candles of bubbles
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday