My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The solace in reading Ruth E. Walker’s Living Underground is in all of the familiarities in the book. I know where the story takes place and can see Scarborough in my mind. The living spaces and the different cultures. The intertwining of music and opera within the story and knowing where in Toronto these performances take place. In that familiarity is comfort. Even, while there are uncomfortable feelings and actions that characters choose to act upon. Real life in all of its beauty and vileness unfold in this junction of familiarity and my home.
There is much to discuss on what is right and what is wrong in love and the perils of human nature. Its ugly sides I see and its ugly truths that are secrets. By holding characters’ secrets I feel engaged with them, whether I adore them or empathize with them, even though what I may be feeling is akin to spite.
And, like Camilla Gibb in Mouthing the Words, Walker knows how to write about sex. What happens is real. Eliciting feelings. I imagine that what seems alright to some, may be seen as something wrong to others. “These days everyone can be seen in a different light…All you need is a different light.”
A recommended read.