Jessica is the main character in the ”The Language of Others’‘ by Clare Morrall. She has been unusual since she was a child. Her parents wondered if she was autistic but one doctor dismissed the idea and they never pursued the subject again, despite their daughter’s struggle to interact with other people. Even as a grown up she sometimes struggles to understand the people around her. Why would people lie, she often wonders until she discovers herself that it can be quite useful at times. She loves music and has been working impressively hard since she was about eight years old, she learns how to play the piano and then the violin. She graduates from a music college with a degree. Her inability to read other people and their intentions leads her to marry a man who might be a musical genius but is inconsiderate, selfish and prone to anger.
The combination of music, the love she feels for her husband Andrew and for their son, gradually drags her out of her own little world, invites her to finally be more adventorous, to get to know the world. However Andrew builds a new wall around her, doesn’t allow her to spread her wings secluding her into a new, confined world of insecurity and fear. Despite his difficult character, she sees him as one of a few people she was able to connect with and cannot believe at first that he wants a divorce. She is left with their son Joel, who as it seems, has inherited some of her awkwardness in the social area.
The reader accompanies Jessica’s venture through her childchood, college times, her marriage and its breakdown. She eventually sees that the separation from her husband gave her freedom and she is finally able to breath and anjoy her space, nearly, her grown up son doesn’t seem to be in much of hurry to fly from the nest. Moreover her husband suddenly decides to contact her directly after all these years.
The author is a qualified musician herself and the descriptions of the music are impressive. They add to the book’s value, I believe. I also enjoyed visiting, through Jessica’s eyes, her large family house where she grew up. Characters in the book were well drawn, including her ex-hippy mother Connie, a bit absentminded and carefree in contrast to her caring and gentle father Roland. Her pretty and outgoing sister Harriet. Their mean and cruel cousins Philip and Colin, and others that she meets later in her life.
I have decided to award this book 4 owls, towels or monkeys.
Owls, towels or monkeys rating
– one of the best books I read
– good read
– disappointed, I thought it was going to be better
– don’t waste your time