I don't know if someone might have had a thread on here already about this book, but I can't find it. I am just longing to discuss this book with someone as I've just adored reading it. Actually, the first time I read it, I just read it mainly for the plot, so as soon as I finished I just started it again, enjoying the writing and the characters far more. The second reading was by far the best, I thought, and I still love it and will probably read it a third time over the summer. I loved the way you just don't know where it is going next with its massive shifts in setting and the change of the characters over time. I loved the kindness of her portrayal of everyone - no one is really bad, just doing the best they can in the circumstances they have. I especially loved the ending, the discussion of paintings and what they mean to us, the direct connection. I have given this book as presents to two of my friends to read so that we can talk about it, but they just aren't reading it quickly enough! I won't go on any more for the moment - but please, has anyone else read it and felt the same?