just finished reading 'The Captive' by Colette.
This book just really struck a chord with me.
Psychologically very detailed, accurate and insightful.
Level of details and observation in the book, as relates to the characters, is superb, characters are very three-dimensional and well drawn.
Settings and historical context very interesting.
Loved the limited scale of the book, just four characters and a few settings, felt quite claustrophobic which fits with all the themes of the book.
Some very lyrical and astute writing about the psychology of love without ever becoming mawkish or sentimental.
Some good plot twists and turns.
Complex characters, felt very real.
Main male protagonist is excellently drawn, he is abusive towards one of the female characters physically but treats the main female character very differently, that side is still there but surfaces in these forms, verbal (silent treatment and rows), jealousy, wants to control who that character can see and where she can go, yet his good and attractive and tender side is also shown, he flips between the two.
Main female character is also a great mixture of cattiness, vulnerability, isolation, bit of a joker, a loner, coldness and calculation, and wariness, and arrogance! She also changes a lot. I started off initially in sympathy with her and then started to dislike her because she was very self-absorbed and didn't have much empathy, however felt sad for her at the end.
Each character is a complicated mixture of good and bad , sophisticated characterization, which I liked very much.
You don't know what to think about each character, your view keeps shifting all the time which I liked too.
Think the book must draw on Colette's experience, she was married several times and some of her husbands treated her badly!
Want to read more Colette now definitely, next visit to the bookshop I get I will be on the lookout!