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The Woman Who Went to Bed for a Year
by Sue Townsend | Literature & Fiction
Registered by faerie-glen of Ulm, Baden-Württemberg Germany on 4/1/2012
Average 6 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by Engele): travelling


13 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by faerie-glen from Ulm, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Sunday, April 01, 2012

8 out of 10

The day her gifted twins leave home for university, Eva climbs into bed and stays there. For seventeen years she's wanted to yell at the world, 'Stop! I want to get off'. Finally, this is her chance. Perhaps she will be able to think.
Her husband Dr Brian Beaver, an astronomer who divides his time between gazing at the expanding universe, an unsatisfactory eight-year-old affair with his colleague Titania and mooching in his shed, is not happy. Who will cook dinner? Eva, he complains, is either having a breakdown or taking attention-seeking to new heights.
But word of Eva's refusal to get out of bed quickly spreads.
Alexander the dreadlocked white-van man arrives to help Eva dispose of all her clothes and possessions and bring her tea and toast. Legions of fans are writing to her or gathering in the street to catch a glimpse of this 'angel'. Her mother Ruby is unsympathetic: 'She'd soon get out of bed if her arse was on fire.'
And, though the world keeps intruding, it is from the confines of her bed that Eva at last begins to understand freedom.

"Be kind, for everybody you meet is fighting a hard battle."
This opening quote sums up the message of this book. I really enjoyed it, because I love stories about people breaking out of their established roles in life. The ending falls a little flat, but this is the kind of book that doesn't rely much on a traditional kind of plot anyway.

Offering it as a ring, because I'm really curious what others think of it.

1. Vekiki (UK)
2. Huffpuff (UK)
3. Scruffykatz (UK)
4. pam99 (UK)
5. Thalasse (Fin)
6. coco7 (Ger)
7. maniffy (Ger)
8. Lilo37fee (Ger)
9. angelface46 (US)
10. eponine38 (US)
11. JudySlump612 (US)
12. Fracula (Can)
13. dantemiro (Can) 


Journal Entry 2 by wingVekikiwing at London, Greater London United Kingdom on Monday, April 16, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Thansk for bringing this to the con for me, it was lovely to meet you too :) I shall crack on with it asap 


Journal Entry 3 by wingVekikiwing at London, Greater London United Kingdom on Thursday, April 26, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (4/26/2012 UTC) at London, Greater London United Kingdom

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

An enjoyable read. Eva was not really what I had expected from the blurb, which was a nice surprise. Most of the set pieces were not to obvious either, and the reveals were fairly subtle. Written with a nice gentle humour. I do like Townsends work, and have fun reading it, but it is always eminently forgettable...
My only bug-bear was how two dimensional Eva's family were - 'please tick charecter box 'scientist' and give us no more thought,'. Likewise Poppy and the grandma's were very flat. Particually disappointing, espcially given that some of the smaller secondary charevters seemed to have much more about them, so it seemed odd not to put the effort into more central figures. 


Journal Entry 4 by Huffpuff at Winchester, Hampshire United Kingdom on Saturday, April 28, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Received in the post today. Only a few chapters left on my current book then I'll move onto this book. Looking forward to it! 


Journal Entry 5 by Huffpuff at Winchester, Hampshire United Kingdom on Monday, May 07, 2012

8 out of 10

I just finished the book this morning. I enjoyed it and read it very quickly because I wanted to know what was going to happen. I think the ending was a little disappointing, and felt perhaps a few of characters need a little more depth; I wanted to know a bit more they acted the way they did.
I did find it funny and laughed out loud at some parts, so would recommend it to others.  


Journal Entry 6 by Huffpuff at Winchester, Hampshire United Kingdom on Thursday, May 10, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (5/11/2012 UTC) at Winchester, Hampshire United Kingdom

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Wrapped up and posted to Scruffykaz 


Journal Entry 7 by Scruffykaz at Sidcup, Kent United Kingdom on Saturday, May 19, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Arrived today :-D Looking forward to readign! 


Journal Entry 8 by Scruffykaz at Sidcup, Kent United Kingdom on Friday, May 25, 2012

6 out of 10

Quite a quick and easy read.

I'm trying to think how to sum it up. It was an interesting read but not fantastic. It was interesting enough to keep me reading though!

In the beginning I completely sympathised with Eva and understood why she took to her bed. Toward the end though, my feelings started to change and Eva seemed to become more selfish and self-absorbed. Speaking of self-absorbed, don't get me started on Brian or the twins!

Well written and definitely worth a read but don't expect too much from it, especially the ending which is a real damp squib!

Glad I read it though.

Going to email the next person on the list and get this out asap. 


Journal Entry 9 by pam99 at Troon, Scotland United Kingdom on Friday, June 08, 2012

This book has not been rated.

the book arrived safely yesterday and I've started it already. I'm looking forward to this one as Sue Townsend is one of my favourite authors. 


Journal Entry 10 by pam99 at Troon, Scotland United Kingdom on Saturday, June 09, 2012

7 out of 10

Parts of this were funny and overall I enjoyed the book, but it's not up to the standard of some of Townsend's earlier works - books like the Queen and I (if that was the title), which had tears running down my face with laughter. I think the main problem was that most of the characters were really quite unsympathetic, the idea of the book was good. PM'ing the next reader. 


Journal Entry 11 by -solaria- at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Wednesday, June 20, 2012

This book has not been rated.

The book arrived here safely, thank you! I'll start reading it soon! 


Journal Entry 12 by -solaria- at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Sunday, June 24, 2012

This book has not been rated.

It was a pleasure reading the book because the font was so large, so I read it within a couple of days during the long Midsummer weekend (partly under an apple tree :-).

Previous books by Townsend have been both funny and tragic, but this one I didn't find funny at all, it was just a tragic story of a woman breaking down. I also expected some critique of the modern society, but this time the author didn't offer much of it.

I agree with previous readers: the characters were a bit flat and/or unsymphatetic, they all felt like charicatures (Alexander was the only exception). The open ending was disappointing, I wanted to know what happened to the twins, for example! It defenitely wasn't the best book by Townsend, but it the idea was fascinating enough, and it was also well written.

I'll mail the book to the next reader soon. 


Journal Entry 13 by -solaria- at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Thursday, June 28, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (6/28/2012 UTC) at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

The book was sent to the next participant in Germany. Happy reading! 


Journal Entry 14 by wingcoco7wing at Sprendlingen, Rheinland-Pfalz Germany on Tuesday, July 03, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Got the book in the mailbox yesterday. Thank you for sending it from Finland. 


Journal Entry 15 by wingcoco7wing at Sprendlingen, Rheinland-Pfalz Germany on Tuesday, July 24, 2012

This book has not been rated.

I had a hard time finding funny parts, in my opinion the book was quite sad, nevertheless gripping and interesting. I could understand Eva so well, but was disappointed how grumpy she gets in the end. The caricature-like characters fitted the style, but the book would be better if all the loose ends could be tied up. 


Journal Entry 16 by wingLilo37feewing at Kelheim, Bayern Germany on Tuesday, July 31, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Thank you for this book! 


Journal Entry 17 by wingLilo37feewing at Kelheim, Bayern Germany on Wednesday, August 08, 2012

5 out of 10

The story of Eva Beaver, who just doesn´t leave the bed sounds quite interesting. In the beginning the book is very funny, one really has to laugh a lot. Sue Townsend's humor, that leaves nothing out, and many witty phrases made me laugh very often.
However, the book continues quite boring. The main figure is neither sympathetic nor unsympathetic. She remains rather pale. And that is the same with the other figures. I hardly developed feelings for them, neither positive nor negative. I guess to stay a year in bed sounds, in fact, initially interesting, but will probably be pretty boring in the long run. And that´s the same for the book.
Ok, I don´t want to leave it as bad as it sounds now. At first I found the book brilliant, really funny and perceptive. There were also some good figures, for example Alexander.  


Journal Entry 18 by wingeponine38wing at Winchester, Massachusetts USA on Thursday, August 30, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Thank you for sending this across the ocean, Lilo37fee, along with the lovely printed photo of your area :-). I have a couple books ahead but will start it as soon as possible.

I'll contact JudySlump612 for her address so it can go out as soon as I've finished. 


Journal Entry 19 by wingeponine38wing at Winchester, Massachusetts USA on Friday, September 14, 2012

8 out of 10

I've kept this longer than intended, and I apologize - it happened to arrive just as my annual busiest period at work was starting, with significant overtime required.

I really enjoyed this. For a long section in the middle of the book, I was laughing so much that my cat looked at me in alarm :-). Towards the end, it got somewhat depressing, though, seeing how many people simply don't care about others.

I agree with what some others have said: some characters could have been a little more developed, but very few of them left me without feelings one way or the other: Those twins - if I could only get my hands on them...AARGH! Eva didn't deserve to have her kids turn out that way; it seems to me she had been a good mother and tried to teach them to care about others. And Poppy and Brian and...yikes!... I'm glad there were at least a couple nice people in this story; for example, I found Eva to be mostly sympathetic overall, and very wise. [Don't want to give away too much more!]

Thank you for sharing this book, faerie-glen; I'll look for more from this author! 


Journal Entry 20 by wingeponine38wing at Winchester, Massachusetts USA on Friday, September 14, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (9/14/2012 UTC) at Winchester, Massachusetts USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On its way to JudySlump612. Enjoy! 


Journal Entry 21 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Saturday, September 22, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Arrived here safely today. Thanks to all, and especially eponine38 for the lovely bookmarks! 


Journal Entry 22 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Monday, October 01, 2012

6 out of 10

For a while it wasn't clear to me whether Eva remained in bed by choice or by some compulsion; I think the book would have been a lot funnier if it were the former. The book also seemed to be somewhat unstructured - just a string of events, without any underlying story. I agree with pam99: this is not up to the standard of The Queen and I.

My favorite part of the book was Chapter 31, in which Eva explains to Brian how to 'do Christmas.' If she had had any second thoughts about retreating to her bed, that recitation would certainly have kept her there forever. And I agree with all of the previous readers who didn't like any of the characters much. This is harsh, I know, but I do feel that Brian deserves to wind up with Poppy. 


Journal Entry 23 by wingJudySlump612wing at Canada, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Monday, October 01, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (10/1/2012 UTC) at Canada, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On its way to Fracula. Enjoy! 


Journal Entry 24 by wingfraculawing at Calgary, Alberta Canada on Friday, October 19, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Book arrived safe and sound today. Now 2nd on my reading list, after the other bookring book that arrived yesterday! 


Journal Entry 25 by wingfraculawing at Calgary, Alberta Canada on Monday, November 05, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (11/6/2012 UTC) at Calgary, Alberta Canada

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Many good journal entries ahead of me sum up my feelings on this story. It started out quite funny and I thought going to bed for a year was a grand idea.

As the book progressed, the situation became somewhat depressing as Eva became more and more demanding of her caregivers. I wish the book had included an epologue, to give us insight into what happened to the twins and Poppy.

Overall, I am glad I read this book. Posting to the next reader, dantemiro. 


Journal Entry 26 by wingfraculawing at Calgary, Alberta Canada on Friday, December 07, 2012

This book has not been rated.

PM to dantemiro to see if she received this book I mailed on November 8/12. 


Journal Entry 27 by dantemiro at Vancouver, British Columbia Canada on Saturday, December 08, 2012

7 out of 10

Thank you faerie-glen for starting this book ring! I had been wanting to read this book for a while, ever since it and I crossed paths in the Water in Heathrow Airport. A big thank you to Fracula for sending it my way - it is now ready to come home!

I did enjoy this book; it was a light read and easy for me to ready on the bus on the way to work. Sue Townsend did a great job portraying a woman just busting (no pun intended) to get out of her mould. The character of Eva was not completely endearing to me and sometimes I wished for more of a Reason.

The ending was mildly unsatisfying. It just happened. Which of course is how it would in any of our lives; we would just get out of bed and have to face the realities we tried to escape (or change).

Faerie-glen, this book is ready to come home! 


Journal Entry 28 by faerie-glen at Ulm, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Friday, March 22, 2013

This book has not been rated.

The Book That Travelled Around The World For A Year has returned home. Thanks for playing, everyone! 


Journal Entry 29 by Engele at Ulm, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Tuesday, October 29, 2013

This book has not been rated.

I got this book at the meetup today as I seem to be "the other one, who likes to read in English" ;o) Thanks you so much for thinking of me, faerie-glen :o) 


Journal Entry 30 by Engele at Ulm, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Saturday, December 07, 2013

7 out of 10

very postmodern. I like the thought it gave me on people, who are "different", like a lot of the people who come to Eva for help. It leaves me with the postmodern problem of a missing Spannungsbogen through the book... 


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