Margaret and Patrick have been married just a few months when they set off on what they hope will be a great adventure-a year living in Kenya. Margaret quickly realizes there is a great deal she doesn't know about the complex mores of her new home, and about her own husband.
A British couple invites the newlyweds to join on a climbing expedition to , and they eagerly agree. But during their harrowing ascent, a horrific accident occurs. In the aftermath of the tragedy, Margaret struggles to understand what happened on the mountain and how these events have transformed her and her marriage, perhaps forever.
A Change in Altitude illuminates the inner landscape of a couple, the irrevocable impact of tragedy, and the elusive nature of forgiveness. With stunning language and striking emotional intensity, Anita Shreve transports us to the exotic panoramas of and into the core of our most intimate relationships.
Shreve (Testimony), who worked in Kenya as a journalist early in her career, returns to that country in her slow latest, the story of a photojournalist and her doctor husband, whose temporary relocation abroad goes sour. The year-long research trip is an opportunity for Patrick, but leaves Margaret floundering in colonialist culture shock, feeling like an actor in a play someone British had written for a previous generation. When a climbing trip to Mt. Kenya goes fatally wrong, Margaret's role in the tragedy drives a quiet wedge between the couple. Compounding those stressors are multiple robberies and adulterous temptations, as well as Margaret's freelance work for a controversial newspaper. Written in a strangely emotionless third person, the novel is stuffed with travelogues and vignettes of privileged expatriate life, including the chestnut of Margaret feeling very guilty about being given a rug she admires. While some of these moments aren't bad, the scant dramatic tension and direct-to-video plot make this a slog.
Customer ReviewsSee All
A change in altitude
Very good. The ending left you wondering.
A Change In Altitude
Probably my least favorite book by this author. I never got to liking a single character, and the whole story just seemed kind of pointless. One review said it was a "slog". I have to agree.
A change in altitude
Even though this book was one of my first books by this author, I found it to be compelling and at times interesting. What could make this book more interesting was the author could of had the couple featured was to explain the marriage and the impact of the incident in the story. Other than that, it was a good book, not the best, but it did draw you in to Africa.