The Spider Truces is a coming-of-age novel set in rural Kent. That description would normally send me running in the opposite direction, but I was intrigued by the second thread of the book focusing on spiders. I was immediately pleased that I decided to give it a try as in the same way that The Behaviour of Moths (The Sister in the US) taught me about moths, this book proved to be a mine of interesting information about spiders.
Unfortunately I found the spider facts so interesting that they started to overshadow the main plot. I found the story of Ellis, growing up in the 1970s and 80s, too slow and gentle. It was beautifully written and the descriptions were incredibly vivid, but I became frustrated by the level of detail. I just wanted the pace to pick up and I’m afraid it never did.
I also felt I was too young to appreciate much of this book. If you grew up in the 1960s or 70s (especially if it was in Kent) then I suspect that you’ll love reminiscing about many of the things mentioned.
I know that a lot of people will love this gentle, meandering story, but I only made it to the end because I loved the spider facts.
Recommended to those who love well-written, descriptive books – especially if you can remember the 1970s!