After suffering the death of her lover and abuse from her husband, Soames, Irene Forsyte finally leaves her marriage for good. Though socially disgraced by her affair, she forms a bond with the late Old Jolyon, a father of the Forsyte clan who had grown distant from the family after reconciling with one of his outcast sons. The young Jolyon had been disinherited after divorcing his wife to marry a penniless foreign governess.
Now, with both his father and his beloved wife dead, the younger Jolyon finds himself drawn in sympathy to Irene, who was so dear to Old Jolyon in his final days. Their shared troubles blossom into a romance, to the horror of Soames Forsyte.
Family matters: don't miss our other titles in The Forsyte Saga.
(P)2006 Blackstone Audiobooks
This second installment of The Forsyte Saga didn't quite measure up to the first, The Man of Property, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. It is mainly taken up with the marital difficulties of the second generation; Soames's indecision over whether or not to divorce Irene, who left him twelve years earlier, and Winifred's decision to divorce her alcoholic, spendthrift, philandering husband, Monty Darty. In between we have second cousins Holly and Val falling in love and marrying against their parents' wishes, and Irene, Soames, and Young Jolyn each give love a second (well, in the case of Jolly, third) chance. I missed Old Jolyn and the aunts, and old James grumbles towards death with slightly less charm than previously. But alas, times are moving on: Queen Victoria has passed, and the flower of England are fading away in the first world war. Nonetheless, I liked In Chancery well enough to continue with the series.
I've just finished the second volume and the story keeps getting better! One note about the recording: in the last hour of the recording there is some repetition of material just read and there seems to be a short section that's out-of-order. Might be best to have the book in hand for the last 10-15 pages.
The Forsyte Saga series starts off a little slowly at the beginning of "The Man of Property", then inexorably draws us into its world of complicated passions and motivations. David Case's inimitable narration brings the story into vivid life. Positively addicting!
I liked this Book 2 better than Book 1. However, you'll be lost if you don't listen to Book 1 first.
It is amazing how a book written so long ago is so current! Galsworthy catches all the small nuances of life and relationships and the narrator just adds to the enjoyment
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