Snow Country opening line: From his height only a hundred feet above the trees, the pilot could see two people running over the ground below – one coming out of a wood, another through a gate in the lane, clinging on to his hat as he ran.
Lena is a lost child, and her mother nowhere near stable enough to raise her. She finds no need for education, finding it beyond her capabilities. But her mind is strong enough for her to leave home and venture into the great city of Vienna. Here her life takes a turn for the worse and she ends up leaving, only to have her problems find her.
1914: Young Anton Heideck has arrived in Vienna, eager to make his name as a journalist. While working part-time as a private tutor, he encounters Delphine, a woman who mixes startling candour with deep reserve. Entranced by the light of first love, Anton feels himself blessed. Until his country declares war on hers.1927: For Lena, life with a drunken mother in a small town has been impoverished and cold. She is convinced she can amount to nothing until a young lawyer, Rudolf Plischke, spirits her away to Vienna. But the capital proves unforgiving. Lena leaves her metropolitan dream behind to take a menial job at the snow-bound sanatorium, the Schloss Seeblick.1933: Still struggling to come terms with the loss of so many friends on the Eastern Front, Anton, now an established writer, is commissioned by a magazine to visit the mysterious Schloss Seeblick. In this place of healing, on the banks of a silvery lake, where the depths of human suffering and the chances of redemption are explored, two people will see each other as if for the first time.
Had our plan to go to Austria, and this exact region of the country fallen away before I started the book, I would not have finished it! The read was tedious and even though it skirts my area of education, this was not enough to engage me. Not a book I would place high on my list of ones to read.
Inspiration published on Lavender and Lime February 13: