I picked up this book because I love the idea of living in a house with 2-3 other writers; people who understand the process, the craft, who help each out through the financial and emotional insecurities, who inspire and who proof read and edit. This is one house I won’t mind sharing my precious space with whilst wedged in the UK but no amount of tweeting has resulted in any offers.
February House isn’t quite like that. It’s the story of what happened when a mix of artists, composers, writers, journalists, poets, editors, actors, screen writers and publishers all shared a house in 1930’s Brooklyn right through world war two. The idea was the brainchild of George Davis, whose name is strangely omitted from the book jacket, after he lost his job at Harpur’s Bazaar. George wanted to make sure the artists kept creating during the depression and throughout the subsequent war but also he needed to cut costs and be with like-minded people. Sounds very 2009 – except for the war thing, hopefully.
I love the idea but struggled to get into the book. Determination got me to skip read though to the end but I longed for the full stories of all the events rather than snippets back and forth. The author gave a fantastic account of all the characters that were the house’s ever changing landscape but for some reason things didn’t gel for me.
I generally pick up books that have been placed in the wrong section as I feel its fate although in hindsight; this novel may have been in the writing section by design.
7/10 Smile factor 7½/10
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