The Telling

The Telling Her mother recently deceased Rachel sets off alone for her family s isolated country house in order to pack up and sell off the remnants of her estate She tells herself the process will only take a f

  • Title: The Telling
  • Author: Jo Baker
  • ISBN: 9781846271403
  • Page: 164
  • Format: Paperback
  • Her mother recently deceased, Rachel sets off alone for her family s isolated country house in order to pack up and sell off the remnants of her estate She tells herself the process will only take a few weeks, but from the moment she steps through the front door, Rachel feels that the house contains than she had expected Along with the memories of her mother, thereHer mother recently deceased, Rachel sets off alone for her family s isolated country house in order to pack up and sell off the remnants of her estate She tells herself the process will only take a few weeks, but from the moment she steps through the front door, Rachel feels that the house contains than she had expected Along with the memories of her mother, there is something else in the house, a presence trying to make itself felt As Rachel struggles to put her mother s affairs in order, she grows ever convinced that the house holds a message for her Can the ghosts of the past be nudging their way into the present, or is Rachel really beginning to lose her mind

    One thought on “The Telling”

    1. Hmmmmwell I finished it. The story focusses on two main characters. Rachel in the present day who is clearing out her mothers cottage following her death and Lizzy who lived in the cottage in the 1800's. I had no idea what Rachel was going on about half the time and found it hard to connect with her at all. She basically moped about and was a total pain in the arse to her husband and child and basically anyone else she spoke to. She picked up on some ghostly force within the cottage and all of a [...]

    2. This book is two stories overlaying each other about two young women from different eras, both struggling with love and loss in vastly different circumstances.It is intensely detailed and as such unfolds slowly and draws you in. the narrative is internalised so the story is told through the two girls observations and feelings. The Chartist movement which Elizabeth becomes drawn into is very interesting as an historical event. In gentle ways the author covers many emotional issues from post natal [...]

    3. What a good book this turned out to be.A seemless dual time narrative that tells the story of present day Rachel, struggling with post-natal depression and her mother's death.Intertwined with that of 19C Elizabeth who gets caught up with the Chartist movement, and a man who questions all the values she holds to be true.Beautifully written in places with a narrative that just keeps you turning the pages.I really enjoyed it.

    4. The Telling by Jo Baker is a recommended, atmospheric ghost story that alternates between two time periods, contemporary and Gothic.Rachel's mother has died and she has went to pack up and clean out the house called Reading Room Cottage that her parents had purchased for a vacation home for their retirement. She had planned to get the chore done quickly, especially since she left her husband Mark, and a new baby at home, but soon realizes that it is going to take longer. Two centuries before thi [...]

    5. If a house were to truly be haunted, this is how I imagine it would be. A powerful and intense read. Baker received some criticism for her descriptions--that they were lengthy. I found them to be lush and beautiful and placed me immediately next to the characteruntil the very end when I had to rush ahead to find out what was going to happen next. Then I went back and read every lovely word. Favorite quote:"Difficulties became like stones in mid-stream; I slid around them, flowed over them; they [...]

    6. My favourite parts of this book were undoubtedly the historical chapters. I was literally wailing while I read the end. My fellow commuters must have thought I was having a small fit. Would definitely recommend, but not to anyone who has lost a loved one recently. It hits very close to home.

    7. I thoroughly enjoyed this story, or rather both of the stories — one in the mid 1800s, the other more or less contemporary: two women, living generations apart, whose lives intersect in barely discernible, and somewhat spooky, ways. Rachel, a young mother whose own mother has recently died, sets out to pack up and sell her parents’ country house in a small village. About 150 years earlier, the cottage had been the home of Elizabeth (Lizzy), the eldest daughter in a family of basket weavers. [...]

    8. My problem with this novel is I dove into the Telling expecting an eerie ghost story and instead I ended up reading a historical fiction. I enjoyed Elizabeth's story taking place in the 19th century, and felt the tale would have been better told had Baker left out Rachel. The 3 stars is based on Elizabeth and her family alone, because if I factor the present day story in, then I disparage the well written parts of the novel. It is my understanding that the haunting is meant to be just at the edg [...]

    9. As one reviewer wrote -"A Treat to Read" - Daily Mail (London) I agree whole-heartedly. This is not a ghost story as a reader might expect. This was a beautiful story about two young women, one in modern day London and one in the mid 1800's whose lives intersect at a cottage in the countryside of England. Rachel and Elizabeth both know loss and the author goes back and forth between the chapters acquainting us with both characters. Is Elizabeth haunting Rachel? Why? The author does a great job o [...]

    10. At first I didn't understand what was going on, but realized, after reading the back cover, that this is really two stories interwoven, with one chapter told from a present-day woman's standpoint and the next told from the standpoint of a different character, a woman who lives in the mid-19th century. I'm not sure the chapters start out alternating, though, which may have lead to my confusion. In any case, I found the nexus between the two stories to be too feeble to really pull off the story. I [...]

    11. If you enjoy historical fiction, then I recommend The Telling for Elizabeth's story and the information about the Chartist movement. I enjoy Jo Baker's historical writing and found Elizabeth a compelling character. The contemporary story line with Kate at times felt like someone was running their fingernails across the chalkboard. Kate, at times, was too frenetic for me. I realize she was emotionally distraught, I'm not totally devoid of compassion; but I just wanted to grab her by the shoulders [...]

    12. I was really looking forward to this book. I thought it would be a good October read, since it's supposed to be a ghost story. It was hardly a ghost story. Or at least, it wasn't scary or eerie at all. The structure - parallel stories of Rachel and Elizabeth - took away from the ghostly potential of the book. I understand that Baker was trying to build suspense, but it felt forced. The story took a while to really get going but then it was over too soon, and for that I'd give it 3.5 stars.

    13. The story was enjoyable but not riveting. I gave this book 4 stars on the strength of the author's writing - her style is exquisite and the minute descriptions of nature, colours, feelings were almost poetry. I found myself highlighting dozens of paragraphs to reread later.

    14. After the death of her mother, Rachel takes it upon herself to clean out her parents’ country house, but she is unprepared for the strange feelings that the vacant house evokes. Rachel soon finds herself losing time, disappearing mentally and then returning with no idea of where she had been and what she had been doing. And her questions about the house keep piling up. Can Rachel figure out the identity of the presence she feels in the house? Who is Elizabeth, and what did life hold for her?Au [...]

    15. "A knock-out ghost story" - Daily TelegraphWell that was what my copy promised so I picked it up for my Halloween reads only to find out that there is no ghost story just the reality of the main character Rachel and her personal "ghosts" which haunted the rest of the book. First of all it's good to mention at this point that there are two stories in this book, told in alternating chapters. The problem is that the other story about the previous owners of the house and the Chartist movement was to [...]

    16. This book is really two stories in one, and the story of Lizzy, a domestic living in late 1800s England, is far superior to the present day Rachael. The stories are meant to mirror each other, but Rachael's is a giant convoluted mess. I seriously had no idea what was going on half the time during her portions of the book. I'm usually pretty good at figuring out British slang, but here, it was impossible. Even Google searches didn't help me. I never cared about Rachael. Lizzy's story is much more [...]

    17. I'll be honest it wasn't what I quite expected but I did enjoy the book. I would have given the book more stars if the book focused solely on Elizabeth and her story. I couldn't get into Rachel's side of the story. Again, I did enjoy the book just not what I expected. If you're expecting a scary ghost story this really isn't that type of book.

    18. I've read a few too many new-mother-thinks-she's-going-mad / being-haunted books. Not sure why but these don't appeal to me, though I always read them because I like a good scare. It's the new motherhood causing mental breakdown and hysteria that doesn't gel with me. It's beginning to feel like a trope.

    19. This was a sad story about two women from different times, haunted by loss, linked by a house. Both had to come to terms with their loss and move on. I found it depressing.

    20. Did not finish. This the second book I've attempted by Jo Baker. They always sound good but are sooooo slow and never seem to go anywhere.

    21. So pleased someone recommended this book to me. I was enthralled from start to finish. I could hardly put it down.

    22. An early Jo Baker, not as good as her more recent books, though still very enjoyable. Her writing style is there, almost cinematic. This is a ghost story, a very subtle one. The writer explores themes of loss, lower class exploitation and upper class privilege, seen through the eyes of two women, one in the 1830s, one modern day. The inspiration came from a book the author read on the Chartist Movement. The aim of the Chartists was to gain political rights and influence for the working classes. [...]

    23. Rachel is a young woman who has lost her mother and now she must clear out the summer cottage that belonged to her parents. While at the cottage she feels there is someone or something there other than herself. She hears a hum and gets goosebumps at odd times. She has emotional issues due to her mother's death and the birth of her daughter shortly after that. She is not coping well and it is affecting her marriage. Elizabeth's story takes place in the cottage long before Rachel's folks have boug [...]

    24. I quite enjoyed this and it’s a pleasurable enough read, but it does have some faults. It’s dual-time narrative, a device that needs to be cleverly handled to make it work, and in this case Jo Baker doesn’t quite pull it off as the connection between the two strands is too contrived. There’s no organic link between them. The story concerns modern-day Rachel, a depressed young wife and mother, who has to go and clear out her dead parents’ country cottage. Whilst there she “senses” s [...]

    25. I was excited to read another novel by this author Jo Baker because I loved Longbourn but must say I was disappointed. This story dragged on and I kept waiting for something exciting to happen. Its basis was interesting regarding the Chartist movement in England during the 1840's. This movements aim was to gain political rights and influence for the working classes. Its members suffered mass arrests, slow trials, transportation and imprisonment with hard labor. The story is told through the live [...]

    26. This book wasn't what I thought it would be, I was expecting a ghost story but infact got much more than I bargained for. The telling is an extremely detailed and intricate book with 2 stories running parallel to each other, Rachel in the present day and Elizabeth in the past. I won't say too much about the plot as it would be a great shame to ruin it for the reader. The historical parts of the book enthralled me, I was intrigued and shocked both in equal measure at the hardships that the family [...]

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