So Long At The Fair by Christina Schwarz - Book Review

Ginny and Jon have been married many years; they were high school sweethearts thrown together after a horrible accident. Jon questions if he chose Ginny out of love or responsibility as he precariously hides a workplace affair. Interwoven in the couple’s story are flashbacks of not only their own adolescence, but also the adolescence of their parents. Hidden in those flashbacks are secrets and passions that have shaped many lives swirling around Jon and Ginny.

So Long At The Fair guides the reader through one climactic day in Jon and Ginny’s life. It’s a character driven tale with a swift climactic build as layer upon layer of human emotion adds to the tension. Will Ginny discover Jon’s affair? Will Jon leave Ginny? Who are the periphery characters and what part will they play in the salvation or demise of the marriage? These questions form a persistently building pressure that will culminate at the local fair.

All of these tensions would play well in a mystery novel, but So Long At The Fair doesn’t really want to be a mystery novel. It’s a love story and the overworked plot twists detract from the tale. Though it’s enlightening to understand Ginny and Jon, the flashbacks also create a distractive element. The final scene is almost too easy and overplayed. A stickler for endings, I closed the book thinking, “That’s it?” Yet, this might be the point the writer is trying to make, that even dependable mature love can still be great.

I expect So Long At The Fair will be a popular book club selection. It has several topics that would work for interesting discussion as well as a steadily building plot to keep the reader moving forward. It’d also be a decent beach read, a light bit of entertainment. In the end, I just wished there had been more Ginny and Jon and less supporting cast.

Ms. Schwarz is also the author of a popular novel and Oprah pick : Drowning Ruth

You can buy So Long At The Fair Here

© 2007-2009


avisannschild said...


Just wanted to let you know that I mentioned your review of this book in my review here.


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