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The Dust that falls from Dreams

“Christmas is such a trial,’ said Mrs McCosh. ‘I do most sincerely wish the Lord had been born at some other time.”

The dust that falls from Dreams ~ Louis de Bernieres


What can I say? I hate a good romance.

But I do love First World War Historical Fiction and considering that this is written by Louis de Bernieres, I assumed it was going to be an effortless masterpiece. I am intensely disappointed that it is not.

It took me too long to read. I was bored and calculating how much longer I’d have to put myself through this torture, because of my annoying obsession with reading what I start. The first half was tolerable because of some beautifully observed scenes from the trenches; very smartly done in the form of hurried diary entries. That was perhaps the best part of this five-hundred-page novel that I’m so glad I’ve finally finished.

The story is typical. First World War. Wealthy British Family. Men die. Women become nurses…you get the gist. Lives as they know it changes and some Upstairs/Downstairs drama are thrown into the mix. The second half of the book is all about who falls in love with who or falls out of it with.

Do forgive my incensed rambling, it may have something to do with how much I despise neat happy endings.

Why you should read it:

  • Quirky characters and well-written prose
  • For Historical Fiction junkies who can’t get enough of the same thing

Why you shouldn’t read it:

  • Booooring!
  • One might be able to predict nearly the entire narrative upon reading the first thirty percent of the story. Which wouldn’t have been such a detriment, hadn’t it been so booooring.