2010: 30. The Bridesmaid

Violent death fascinates people.  It upset Philip.”

The Bridesmaid, Ruth Rendell

Not my favorite Rendell, this is the story of Philip, who becomes infatuated with one of the bridesmaid’s at his sister’s wedding.  He thinks Senta (!) is the woman of his dreams, and not to put to fine a point on it, she is not.  There is murder and mayhem and such, and some discussion of the folie-a-deux. But to be totally fair to Rendell, I must admit that the reason I don’t like it isn’t the writing - she absolutely captures the kind of crazy woman that Senta is, while still making it plausible that Philip would fall for her.  Moreover, the B-plot (for lack of a better term) about Philip’s family, and how its falling apart is extremely well-rendered, and adds greatly to the atmosphere of the story.  No, if I’m to be honest, the reason I don’t really like this one is that it’s too well done.  The story creeps me out, and I feel too bad for poor Philip, who seems like a nice person dragged into madness (all too plausible, given his circumstances).  It’s very, very well done, but a shade too real for me.

Date/Place Completed: June 2010; D.C.

Categories: Ruth Rendell Project; Re-Read

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017