THE FORGOTTEN SMILE by Margaret Kennedy


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An Aegean island, wrapped in mystery and deliberately avoided by cruise ships and tourists, provides the setting for a novel blending realism and a sort of pagan symbolism in a way that Margaret Kennedy is peculiarly qualified to handle. Three plots crisscross and eventually merge. There's the story of Kate, who feels she is no longer needed by her grown up family and somewhat silly husband, and takes herself off on an Aegean cruise only to land on Keritha and rediscover lost friends of her childhood... There's the Challoners' story- half Greek, half English -- and of how deprived they were in England until they returned to their heritage as lords of the isle of Keritha, their role to protect it from the modern world... And finally there is unattractive, bumbling Selwyn Potter, written off years before by Kate, because he didn't belong and showed it by smashing a fragile table... It is Selwyn who ties the loose threads together, when- alone and unhappy, he acts as interpreter to a priggish, lacklustre Prof. Challoner, come to claim his heritage, when Alfred and Edith die. And he stays until the magic of the island changes him, and both he and Kate learn that life has still something to offer them. Actually the book remains in afterthought as Keritha's story, primitive, unaware, oddly happy setting for its pagan people. That the professor alone threatens it destruction is soon forgotten in realization of the magic it has wrought for two unhappy people. An imaginative tale, symbolic and haunting and yet at times wryly humorous.

Pub Date: March 12th, 1962
Publisher: Macmillan