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Hunt the Slipper

Violet writes deftly and sharply with a pen which probably had a diamond nib. Her comic, ironic, gently malicious eye sets out the English aristocratic protagonists as people who, though charming, are emotionally retarded by the decorum of mores and conventions that can turn the propensity for love into the safe passion of the collector. It is a comedy of errors about the perception of the importance of love. Only Caroline, married too young to the undemonstrative Sir Anthony Crome and the mother of a daughter, has thought about the importance of love and analysed her position; she longs to break through convention and even out of her class to achieve happiness through love (even though this is a woman who feels she has to keep her `brainy' pursuits secret and not flaunt her sportswoman skills she doesn't focus on these areas of suppression). But she has fallen in love with Nigel who is much older and less confident than she is and tied to the past including memories of his mother and a broken love affair. Although he is very much in love with Caroline, he is also a friend to Anthony. At the end of the book Caroline does her reckless best to incite Nigel to take reckless action.


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