Review: Tigers in Red Weather- Liza Klaussmann
Well it’s been a while since I last wrote a post, I’ve been so unbelievably busy that I haven’t had the time to sit down and write. It’s been a hectic few weeks- especially since I have just got engaged two weeks ago- so I’m busy but very happy! I’ve also been getting prepared for college in September which isn’t going to give me much time for my blog, but I am determined to write whenever I have a spare moment (:
Ok so, I read Tigers in Red Weather while holidaying and I absolutely loved it. It had me at the moment a critic described it as ‘Gatsby- esque’, and since Gatsby is one of my favourite novels I had to read this one and see if it was as good as they said it was. Tigers in Red Weather is a stunning debut novel by New York writer Liza Klaussmann; it is evocative, elegant, glamorous and chilling all in one go, and its irresistible lyrical prose makes it difficult to put the book down. Creating a hazy world of cocktails, drugs, desperate desires and long, lazy summer afternoons, the novel hints at a seductive Southern Gothic genre where everything is not as it first appears to be.
It is the end of World War II when only the shells of burnt out houses exist in ruined cities, rationing has come to an end, and everyone is trying to piece their lives back together. Nick and her cousin Helena retreat to their glorious family beach estate where they have grown up together- the infamous Tiger House. On the cusp of what is to be the best days of their adult lives, anything is possible. As the years go by and everything is not as wonderful as they believed it would be, Nick and Helena return to Tiger House with their children in an attempt to cling on to and even recreate that sense of possibility. However when a shocking discovery is made on the island, the world of disillusionment shatters, and a seething mass of despair, bitterness, resentment and hate slowly rises to the surface, growing more and more powerful until the inevitable finale.
The narrative technique was one of the many elements I enjoyed about the novel; each of the five sections is told from the viewpoint of a major character, allowing us to gain insight to the inner lives of these fascinating characters from very different perspectives. Ed of course is a very complicated character and it was interesting that Klaussmann wrote and concluded the novel from his point of view. One of the characters who I really enjoyed was beautiful and glamorous Nick, who really created that feeling of longing and missed chances. Helena was also an equally engaging character, especially when reading about her traumatic past and the effects it has come to have on her present life. The language used by the author was also effective, in the sense that the tone was both languid and lazy, so it felt like you were helplessly being drawn into the story and could completely immerse yourself in it.
Tigers in Red Weather is a honest and beautiful novel of desire, abandon, despair and quiet desperation, offering the reader a dark mystery and an equally dark look into the inner workings of marriage, mental illness and the lives of the rich. The hot, lazy, summer setting with a bit of glamour thrown in echoes themes from The Great Gatsby, as facades are crumbling and ugly truths are surfacing.
Do I recommend you to read it? Yes, I was hooked and I thoroughly enjoyed it
Genre: historical fiction/ romance/ mystery