Date: January 2017
Duration: 4 hours 56 minutes
Another frank May Sinclair exploration of fin de siècle English love and sex, marriage and adultery, "The Tysons" is the story of the caddish Nevill Tyson and his beautiful but frivolous young wife Molly. Sinclair uses a different narrative voice than we hear in much of her fiction, a sort of witty Jane Austen archness as she dissects the characters of the provincial village Drayton Parva. As always, she demonstrates an intriguing mixture of Victorian prudishness and modern free-thinking, particularly in her rendering of the sexual escapades of her characters.
The step-by-step fragmentation of the Tyson marriage seems predestined from the start, but the novel reveals, as Sinclair's novels always do, a passion for profound understanding of the human comedy and why we do what we do. Even though the story is told from the perspectives of mostly masculine characters, Sinclair uses their voices to shine a stark light on the many ways in which women were victimized at the time by being the chattel of the men in their lives, in particular the denigration of the female intellect in favor of the merely decorative feminine beauty which existed only for the male ego. - Summary by Expatriate