Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Review: Alena

AlenaAlena by Rachel Pastan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book has the same plot as Rebecca, and the same basic cast, and most of the same scenes. There are a few small changes in the plot and the relationships among the characters, but overall Alena is very true to the original it is based on. Where Pastan does make her own mark on the story is in the setting. This story is placed in a museum on Cape Cod instead of on a British estate. This provides an opportunity for a lot of exposition on art and its role in the world which adds a dimension to the novel that it needed. The descriptions of the art and the scenery surrounding the museum are nicely drawn. Here is a description of Cape Cod:
"It's barely land at all. Just a curved ribbon unrolling into the blue--or smoky gray--Atlantic. The sky is so wide open, and everything is always in motion. The grass, the flags, the clouds. Even the land, shifting under you." (p. 53)
This is an enjoyable novel, and the lengths to which it follows the structure of the du Maurier classic is an interesting twist.

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