Janette stakes her claim
THE CLAIMANT By Janette Turner Hospital ($ 29.95)
IN what is a thoroughly enjoyable read, Janette Turner Hospital’s latest book takes readers on an enticing ride where they get the chance to confirm the identity of a mysterious claimant to a vast family fortune.
The narrator Marlowe’s voice is full of cynical wit and sleaziness but there is also a redeeming sense of unfulfilled longing that develops empathy and fuels the story.
Overlaying four main characters is not easy but Turner Hospital succeeds in cleverly separating each of their interlocked histories and multiple names and identities.
There is also a meaty theme here about the development of identity, in that the various personas groomed or purged by the characters question how identity evolves.
The vivid descriptions of specific places, their history and milieu is keenly observed and well- researched.
The novel’s style is tight and the prose strikes up a rhythm which provides an easy reading pace. Overall, the book is a highly recommended read.