I read Sarah Waters 'Affinity' quite a few years ago now when it was first released but I remember sitting on a beach in Spain not caring for the sun, for the sand, for the ocean or the good looking (and some not so good looking) people passing me by, only the story unfolding before me. I spent the best part of that holiday completely consumed in the magic and wonder of two women, Selina Dawes and Margaret Prior.
Much like in her previous works Waters offers a rather gothic setting of Victorian London. Her characters Selina Dawes who is a spiritualist and medium imprisoned for assault and fraud, and Margaret Prior who visit’s the prison, together cast their own spell over us as we read. I often think I trust too easily but this is something that Waters used to her advantage. Waters allows the reader to develop a false sense of hope in her characters as if you yourself are experiencing things first hand.
I was compelled by the character development throughout but more so nearer the end. It was very clever the way in which the reader became part of the illusion created in the story. You’re literally falling in love, wanting to believe in every word and a promise of a happy ending. For this reason, the tragedy in ‘Affinity’ is unexpected and this makes the book one of my favourites. I was afraid to finish it because I knew it would break my heart… and it did. But again this is why I loved it so much. Can you remember reading a book, where two weeks later your still completely shocked?
I didn’t want to give any clues to the ending for the sake of those of you who haven’t read it, but in order for me to express my love for this book I have to mention the ending and how this made it one of the best books I’ve ever read.
(Unfortunately I leant this book out… if that person is reading then please get in touch… You know who you are hehe x)