The Proof of Love – Catherine Hall

As soon as I heard that this book was set in a remote, rural village in 1970’s Britain, I knew I had to read it as I find this type of setting very nostalgic and this type of books a real ‘comfort read.’ The book is set in the Lake District, whereas I grew up on the small island of Ynys Mon off the North coast of Wales but it reminded me a lot of my childhood where I was also the only child living on a small farm, just like Alice in this story.

Alice is not the main character of the story but a great deal of the novel centres around her.  She lives with her mother, father and Uncle, a traditional hard-working farming family.  During the heatwave that was the summer of 1976 in Britain, a young mathematician from Cambridge (as far and strange a world away from the rural setting he crashes into as if he had come from another world entirely) turns up at Alice’s farm looking for work for the summer.  Alice immediately dotes on him as he becomes her unlikely ally and friend but the rest of the close, small-knit community eye him with suspicion and treat him very much as the outcast.

We, as the reader, know that Spencer is hiding something and isn’t keen to be welcomed into the community anyway but as life on the farm starts to weave its’ spell over him, he becomes more and more attached to the few friends he does make and we are compellingly drawn into his life and story.  However, little by little, the reader starts to see the bigger picture opening up and a feeling of unease starts to creep up your spine… You start to see things unravelling before Spencer does and you are powerless to help.  You just sit there, eagerly turning the pages but with a sense of dread too, right up into the final, devastating end.

I loved this book and regret that I borrowed it from my local Library and didn’t actually buy my own copy as I can see myself revisiting it again at some stage.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lindsay
    Jul 25, 2012 @ 03:23:45

    I loved this book, it was one of my favourites of last year. Glad to read how much you liked it too. Nice to find your blog 🙂



  2. Debbie Hall
    Sep 28, 2012 @ 19:26:23

    I have just picked this up in the library so I am excited, it looks so good. Thanks so much for the card it was so nice and thoughtful of you


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