Who better to recall the rise and fall of Irish theatre legend Katherine O'Dell, than her daughter Norah. After all, she has been present in the wings for much of this dark and dazzling life. From Hollywood and Dublin to London's West End, Norah bears witness to many of her mother's on and off stage performances.
Lyrical and emotionally insightful, this is a tender portrait of a fictional mother and daughter's intertwined lives, anchored with an enduring love and shaped by cultural expectation and exploitation.
Enjoyed by all members.
Beautiful writing as usual from Anne Enright, but not everyone enjoyed it.
For those who enjoy Irish writing this was much enjoyed. For the others it was not an easy read.
An intriguing and enjoyable book which gradually reveals its secrets. Beautifully written.
Our group was rather underwhelmed by this Anne Enright novel. Found the obtuseness and structure over complicated for no good reason.
Not an easy book to read. We found some difficulty in being sure which character was speaking or spoken about, and the shadowy reference to the husband of the narrator. An accomplished writer with a vivid use of language. Really seemed about a life of pretence on the mother's part, and her difficult relationship with the daughter.
An interesting account of theatre life in that period. Complex plot and well researched.
Mixed reaction from the group. Beautiful writing but less interest in the actual story.
Mixed feedback. Some couldn't finish it while others found it well-written.
The responses to 'Actress' were variable - several of the group had not completed the book; three commented on how well-written the novel was, but found the story either difficult to engage with or tedious. Another thought the use of memoir writing as a device was a clever technique and added authenticity to the characters and location within the novel.
Well-written as always, but the plot wandered!
A light read, funny and enjoyable - loved some of the Irish expressions.