Brother of the More Famous Jack, by Barbara Trapido

This is Katherine's story, in which she embarks on a university education studying philosophy, after impressing a tutor, Jacob Goldman. After a coincidental meeting with a mutual friend, she finds herself staying at Jacob's house. Subsequently she becomes a close family friend, helping with the younger children and sharing secrets with Jacob's wife.

Kathering grows up during the course of the book: after an infatuation with Roger, one of Jacob's sons, leads to a disappointing and short-lived affair, she moves to Rome, where she spends several years, living with someone who gets her pregnant and then leaves her. On her return to England she renews her friendship with the Goldmans, and becomes once again entangled with their lives.

This is another beautifully written book by Barbara Trapido: the style is effortless and natural, reminds me of Margaret Drabble. And the picture painted of the Goldmans en famille is very convincing: all have character traits which are brought out by their dinner-table arguments and set-tos.

Completed : 05-Oct-2004

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