William Trevor, "The Room"

Nine years after her husband was accused of murdering a girl he was seeing, Katherine starts an affair of her own.

(from The O. Henry Prize Stories 2007)

In a way, reading this story was like canoing through diced ham. It was a trudge, a battle, a strenuous task. The plot, more of a gradual revelation, was always interesting, but the telling was slowed by Katherine’s abstract ponderings. Everything crept along, details were doled out sparingly, in a way that frustrated just slightly more often than it tantalized. Still, the complexity of the characters and the sorta-mystery kept me reading.

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