“But you do,” he went on, not waiting for contradiction. “You love the boy body and soul, plainly, directly, as he loves you, and no other word expresses it …”
Lucy has her rigid, middle-class life mapped out for her, until she visits Florence with her uptight cousin Charlotte, and finds her neatly ordered existence thrown off balance. Her eyes are opened by the unconventional characters she meets at the Pension Bertolini: flamboyant romantic novelist Eleanor Lavish, the Cockney Signora, curious Mr Emerson and, most of all, his passionate son George.
Lucy finds herself torn between the intensity of life in Italy and the repressed morals of Edwardian England, personified in her terminally dull fiancé Cecil Vyse. Will she ever learn to follow her own heart?
OKAY, DEFINITE FAVOURITE!
A Room with a View is the story of Lucy Honeychurch, who unwittingly enters into a picture perfect love triangle after vacationing in Italy. Forster does such a fantastic job with describing the scenery that I had one of those rare experiences where I completely forgot where I was and came to, wondering why my surroundings were my living room and not a veranda with a spectacular view of Italian landscapes.
Here’s a snippet of a cultural description that transported me:
“He knew the people who never walked about with Baedekers, who had learnt to take a siesta after lunch, who took drives pension tourists had never heard of, and saw by private influence galleries which were closed to them. Living in delicate seclusion, some in furnished flats, others in Renaissance villas on Fiesole’s slope, the read, wrote, studied, and exchanged ideas, thus attaining to that intimate knowledge, or rather perception, of Florence which is denied to all who carry in their pockets the coupons of Cook.” (p. 48)
As for the story itself, I was on a whirlwind of emotions with this one. Young and unaware of even her own feelings, Lucy’s emotions is intense to the reader. I won’t go into too much details however, A Room with a View manages to weave a tale that leaves no stone unturned. The betrayal by someone was very intense that my stomach was in knots.
Oh, since I play the piano from time to time I really appreciated the music references: “Like every true performer, she was intoxicated by the mere feel of the notes: they were fingers caressing her own; and by touch, not by sound alone, did she come to her desire”
That said – GO READ THIS BOOK! It is a great read where every page is savoury to hold on to, to take your time in reading as you do not want it to end. I already cannot wait to read this again.
“It is a wonderful opportunity, the possession of leisure.”