Book Review: The Gap of Time

The Gap of TimeThere are only three possible endings to a story-if you put aside And They All Lived Happily Ever After, which isn’t an ending but a coda.

The Gap of Time is a retelling of “A Winter’s Tale,” which is really one of Shakespeare’s unsung plays. Winterson does an excellent job of pulling this story into the present.

New Bohemia has that sexy bluesy feel that just encapsulates the spirit of New Orleans. Music is such a huge part of this story. It’s Shakespeare for musicians.So much of this story is centered around artists that I not only felt like I needed to be in New Orleans, I wanted to have jazz music playing in the background.

Likewise, I want to point out that this needs to be on a diverse books list. Shep is a black man, you have a gay romance, and you have female characters who aren’t just reactionary.

Understandably there are certain limitations that one must work in when dealing with a remake such as this. Feminism isn’t what it is today and not all of Shakespeare’s plays really pushed the boundaries of what a woman could or couldn’t do. Winterson does an excellent job with the framework that she is given. Perdita is inquisitive, she wants to control her own story. Pauline is a strong capable assistant whom I could totally emulate.

And then there is Mimi. Mimi embodies sorrow. In the original play she just kind of goes away and then reappears at the end. In this story, we see her face horrific sorrow and abuse and watch as she turns in on herself. She shows what grief can do to someone and it’s refreshing. Not every character needs to be a fighter. Nor do they have to be a victim and Mimi is neither.

If you are looking for a diverse book to sink your teeth into this is a good one for the holiday break….just make sure you have some jazz music ready in the background.

*This book was provided to me by Blogging for Books.


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