Love Child by Sheila Kohler

In 1956, a woman nicknamed Bill living in South Africa is being badgered by her late husband’s accountant to create a will, an action that causes her to reflect on the secrets of her past. In the 1920s, she eloped with a Jewish man and became pregnant before her parents could annul the marriage. Rather than allow their daughter to remain married, Bill is sent to live with her three spinster aunts who hid her in their house and arrange for the adoption of her child without Bill’s permission.

I picked this book up at the library because it deals with themes previously discussed in a book I read earlier this month. Admittedly, the cover was the what attracted my attention as I browsed the shelves, but the topic was what caused me to check it out.

The narrative is structured so that the past is revealed in parallel to the present. Chapters switch between the 20s, 30s, and 50s and are clearly demarcated as such so that it is not a confusing structure. And I thought it was really interesting how Bill decided to share her secret with her teenage sons, how that decision helped firm up her rocky relationship with the two.

Unfortunately, overall, it was not the strong read I was hoping it would be. I know the topic can be heart wrenching , but the novel never rose to the challenge of being emotionally impacting. I felt for Bill up until the point where she becomes involved with another woman’s husband in the 1930s. That part of the novel was completely lost upon me.

Book Mentioned:

  • Kohler, Sheila. Love Child. New York: Penguin, 2011. Print. 256 pgs. ISBN: 9780143119197. Source: Library.
Book Cover © Penguin. Retrieved: January 5, 2013.
Advertisements

Please feel free to share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s