Watership Down is one of my all-time favorite novels. So I was excited to read something else by Richard Adams. I can't remember why I chose this book or why I decided to order it from ABEbooks.com, but I did not really see the cover or anything until I had already paid for the book. You can't see from the picture, but on the front cover right above the title is this phrase from the New York Times Book Review, "Beautiful haunting erotic love and an absolutely terrifying ghost story." I turned the book over and on the back, "Stunning. . . a novel of love and beauty, mystery and horror." Right above that blurb from Vogue, the main female character is described as "a seductress of erotic mystery and exquisite sexual genius." I remember thinking, Geez, what have I gotten myself into?
As it turns out, almost none of what is written all over the cover of this book is true. The book occasionally deals with sex, there is some mystery surround the female lead Kathe, and there is technically a ghost. However, the ghost plays such a small role in the story that I would never refer to this as a ghost story, definitely not haunting. There were a few parts that were a little spooky, but not "terrifying," "chilling," or "terrible" as the hyperbolic cover suggests. However, this is not to say that the book was bad. It was a good, slow-moving story of a man who falls in love with a woman he knows little about. I wonder if I would have enjoyed the book better had the cover not set me completely on the wrong path. I know that I would have enjoyed the ending much more than I did.
So, I didn't really like The Girl in A Swing, but it was not so bad that I won't give Adams another shot.
**Update: I gave Adams another shot.