So over the course of the weekend, Alex and Ruth agonise over buying and selling in a frightened city, the tanker driver/terrorist successfully eludes the authorities, and Dorothy undergoes surgery and post operative recovery. This is a snap shot of ordinary people living ordinary lives, doing the best they can with the struggles that old age brings, the slower thinking processes. It is also the most gorgeous and touching love story; not only Alex and Ruth's long and enduring relationship, now in its sunset days, but also their love for their little Dorothy, the light of their lives, and in turn her love for them. Because unusually and brilliantly, chapters of this book are also written from the point of view of Dorothy, prior to her operation and after. We feel her fear, her uncertainty at where she is, the sickness and injuries of the cats and dogs around her, her focus on Alex and Ruth returning to pick her up and take her home.
I loved this: such a joy to read, not at all complicated, no great earth shattering moral or ethical dilemmas to be solved, no navel gazing or self-pondering. Just sheer enjoyment in being part of a very small family getting on with the business of day to day living.