A Rural Affair by Catherine Alliott


My Rating: 4/5

Kat’s Review: I have read all of Catherine Alliott’s books and looked forward to another (hopefully) good read. When I ordered my book from Amazon I couldn’t help but notice that there were already 4 reviews, 2 of which loved it and 2 of which loathed it. I was quite surprised by such an extreme reaction.

Having now read the book I can understand why there was such a divide. Happily for me I liked this book. In the intro of the book we meet Poppy, the wife who sometimes resents her mean husband. The type of lady that can have bad thoughts about her husband, although she may not want those bad things to actually take place! As soon as I had read the first chapter I realised that I loved this type of character. The one which isn’t all sweetness and light, the sort of woman that certainly isn’t perfect and has the occasional dream about the what-if’s.

In addition to Poppy we meet her three friends, all of whom are not perfect. Her neighbour Jennie with the disastrous husband, newly separated Angie and the older and chain-smoking Peggy. All in all they are a bunch of women who all have their own issues and are far from happy in their own way.

The story is based around Poppy trying to move on and find happiness after the death of her husband. There are a couple of scenes in it that had me laughing out loud even if they were a little far-fetched. I didn’t particularly love the characters individually, I just felt that it was nice to read something that was a little nearer to the truth than some other books you read and made for a refreshing change.

There are other characters that make an appearance such as Jennie’s stepdaughter Frankie and some of the villagers and they all added to the eclectic mix of messed up and confused people trying to make the most of their lives. This book is certainly not romance and roses, but is more a true to life look at real women struggling through trying to make the right decisions. It may not be to everybody’s taste and for those that are maybe not amused by black humour, maybe it’s not for you. I tend to have quite a twisted sense of humour peppered with huge doses of realism so for me this book was perfect. Maybe a slight variation from what she normally writes but I really enjoyed it.

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