Sunday, June 22, 2014

Brat Farrar (1949)

Brat Farrar. Josephine Tey. 1949/1997. 288 pages. [Source: Bought]

I definitely enjoyed reading Brat Farrar. Was it my favorite-favorite Tey novel? Probably not. But I enjoyed it so much more than Miss Pym Disposes and A Shilling for Candles.

In Brat Farrar, the reader is in on the secret. Brat Farrar is impersonating Patrick Ashby. Alec Loding "discovers" Brat Farrar's resemblance to the Ashby family. There were twin brothers Patrick and Simon. Patrick vanished when he was twelve or thirteen, and he was presumed dead. The note he conveniently left behind led everyone to believe it was suicide. Even though Patrick didn't seem the sort. Then again, Patrick would not have been the sort to run away for eight years either. Alec Loding is encouraging his new friend, Brat, to invent such a tale. BE Patrick. Inherit the family estate. He tempts him with horses. If there is one thing our hero can't resist, it's horses. His oh-so-special way with horses gives his life meaning. On the one hand, Brat is essentially a moral guy. He knows right from wrong. He is not the sort to be reckless and cruel for the fun of it. On the other hand, ALL THOSE HORSES. So he allows Loding to coach him, teach him, anything and everything he needs to know to BE PATRICK. (How does Alec know all these details? Sure, a family friend might know some stuff, but everything from the age of three or four on up?! Everything???)

So Patrick Ashby returns from the dead. He takes his place with his family. Everything seems to be off to a good start, but, Brat can't help wondering WHY Simon is so SMUG. Like Brat, readers pick up some clues...not firm, exact clues perhaps...but strong feelings that Simon is, well, the more evil twin.

I liked this one. It was a very quick read.

© 2014 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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