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The Door

The Door - Magda Szabó


I found the atmosphere of this novel to be full of darkness and despair. The friendship  between two woman, one an up and coming author, the other an older woman revered on the street. Emerence is a character I will not soon forget, a woman who has seen much, sheltered unbiasedly different people throughout the war, a hardworking woman of the utmost honor and pride.

The title has many different meanings in this book, the literal door and other doors, internal and psychological. This book raised so many questions. What does friendship mean? How much of how a person sees themselves should be taken into consideration when the person needs help. How much do you owe a person when you are the only one they let behind the barriers and the secrets they have constructed in order to keep their past and present private? I have thought of this book on and off for the last few days, it is brilliantly written and packs a powerful punch. I loved Viola the dog and how attuned he was to the wants and need of Emerence and she to him.

This is not a happy little story but it is a thought provoking one, a book that will not be easily forgotten.