Picks and Pans Review: A Stopover in Venice

UPDATED 09/01/2008 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 09/01/2008 at 01:00 AM EDT

by Kathryn Walker

bgwhite bgwhite   



REVIEWED BY MICHELLE GREEN

FICTION
An actress divorced from folk singer James Taylor, Walker tells the tale of an unhappy musician's wife in this rambling roman á clef. Nel, her alter ego, is a smart, sexy, malcontent invisible to her narcissistic husband. She goes AWOL in romantic Venice while her moody spouse, Antony ("a black hole into whom I've disappeared"), is on tour in Europe. Walker's labored plot involves Nel's idyll at the home of a contessa who links her with a charming art expert; while reviving her sexually, he discovers her true worth. There's a racy, voyeuristic quality to some of Walker's best observations, particularly when she allows Nel to crack open the door to her former life. When not performing onstage, she writes, Antony "shut down like a folded tent"; in conversation, he "was the entrée, I was the condiment"; and behind his indifference lurked a steely anger. "Sometimes when I would go through a door," Nel remembers, "Antony would stand aside and make a courteous little bow.... As I passed by I felt a cold shiver of hostility that made me want to hit him." Emotional truth: It beats tepid fiction every time.

Your Reaction

Follow Us

On Newsstands Now

Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Emma and Andrew: All About Hollywood's Cutest Couple
  • Prince George! More Yummy Photos

Pick up your copy on newsstands

Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine

Advertisement

From Our Partners

Watch It

Editors' Picks

From Our Partners



Sign up for our daily newsletter and other special offers.
    Choose your newsletters
Thank you for signing up! Your request may take up to one week to be processed.
    see all newsletters