I have just finished reading “The Secret Intensity of Everyday Life” by William Nicholson. I actually bought this ebook back in May and it’s taken me a while to get around to it, but now i decided that i fancied a less frantic paced book to my usual choices!
The Secret Intensity of Everyday Life – William Nicholson (via Amazon)
It is somewhat different to my usual book choices, but it was easy to read and fascinating with the interconnecting stories of the characters.
The central story is of the sudden return of happily married Laura’s first love, Nick. We discover the intensity of their short relationship and its sudden ending, and see that neither party has forgotten that first love. Things are more complicated now, as Laura has grown older and has her own life with her husband and children. It is interesting to see how Nick’s return affects Laura, and also her husband, Henry.
We get an insight into Henry’s life at work and his feelings towards his wife and to the star of the show which he wrote.
We also see how Laura and Henry’s son, Jack, struggles with trying to fit in with the right boys at school, even though the decisions made are potentially damaging to him and to the boys’ hero, dubbed the “Dogman”. The boy’s point of view is a nice change from the angle of the adults, bringing in his naivety to the story.
We also discover what goes on behind closed doors. In the case of the young teacher, Alan, we discover his anguish towards the many rejections he receives because of his writing, and also his growing feelings for the single mother whose child he tries to help through bullying. We also find that Alan’s old lonely neighbour has secret desires for Alan, and she is sure he feels the same, although as the reader we unfortunately know better.
Other characters who are explored include: the single mother’s mother and her relationship with her dog, the village rector and his different approach to religion, and the so-called ”Dogman” and his little family.
I liked this book with all the facets which make up a satisfying whole. Themes covered include all kinds of love, death, grief, midlife crisis, identity, happiness, and so on.
I give this book a respectable 7 out of 10 because it is well written, with enough juicy bits to make you want to find out what happens to the characters. We get satisfactory closure on some of the characters’ stories, although a few are left unanswered. The main story with Laura and her feelings for Nick has a good ending, one which i actually hoped for because some things are better the way they are! Definitely a good read if you want something realistic and a quiet easy read.
Note: I read this on my Kindle.