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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
The Fabian Waltz: A Novel Based on The Life of George Bernard Shaw by Kris Hall brings back one of the most legendary playwrights to ever be born. Giving his life a gentle twist, the author takes readers through the life of Shaw as he faces challenges he never expected. Shaw and Sidney Webb both fall for women who prove to be a little out of their leagues. Young Charlotte Payne-Townshend is a free-spirited, progressive woman who will not give in to Shaw’s Casanova-like tendencies. Beatrice Potter, on the other hand, is more hands-on and consistently wows Webb with her desire to bring in social reform for the poor. However, the real fun begins when the two couples spend their summer in a country cottage that they share with Oscar Wilde and his lover Alfred Douglas. When they return to London, they face issues that they never expected, and they may have to make decisions that will change their lives forever.
George Bernard Shaw’s life intrigues all literature students who read his epic comedic, political, and satirical plays, and I am no exception. Author Kris Hall takes readers inside the mind and life of Shaw as he navigates the difficult waters of courting Charlotte and works hard to make her even consider him as a life partner. I have never read a better depiction of Shaw and Webb’s friendship. No one makes it as authentic as author Kris Hall made it. Kris Hall’s Shaw is lively, a little eccentric, and fun, especially when he is wooing Charlotte. The relationship between these two is fun and entertaining. Charlotte gives as good as she gets, and I think that makes their relationship. The narrative suits our perspective of Shaw well without giving in to the typical narrative style that authors create when talking about legendary writers of the past. The Fabian Waltz oozes intelligence and charming wit and there is never a dull moment. The author does the characters and the story justice. I adored this book!