A Day Off by Storm Jameson

The title does not fit its contents as it is rather a long and lonely day in the life of a woman desperate to survive by counting on no account people. A rather sad tale not to be read by those in an already low mood.

Having reached middle age, the unnamed narrator has never learned self reliance and it has lead her to a bitter and isolated life. Each potential glimmer of the character’s empathy ends in scorn and self-pity. Not someone I’d wish to spend much time with. She sees the world only from her own view point and justifies her self-serving treatment of others as truly justified.

John Cratus spends time with the protagonist, but eventually distances himself, as well as his financial support. Perhaps already committed to another or just exasperated by the gloominess, he is evidently not sending any expected letters with accompanying cash.

Ernst Groener, a former coworker and eventual partner in a cafe is another defeatist. Although hardworking, he is also a somewhat hopeless fellow who leaves hurriedly believing his heritage will bring about serious troubles.

Quotes:

They were muddied and confused by the thinking of other people, her mother, the young woman who as she was had been debauched by the machines, the men and women and children, street on narrow street of them, heaped together in rooms much too small for them, scarcely separated by walls too thin to keep back a sound, forced to abandon privacy , to deny the decencies, like animals penned together, and their souls a burden to them.

Ms. Jameson sounds like someone I’d enjoy spending time with. Perhaps we’d share a cup of tea and discuss the current state of affairs (she’d probably fall out of her chair). Her passion for equality and politics are remarkable.

My rating for A Day Off is a 7 out of 10.

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Next up , Edith Wharton’s Ethan Frome

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