My rating: 3 of 5 stars
One cannot help but think that afternoon tea with Robin Dalton would be a jaw dropping experience, what with the name dropping and titbits of information that she could introduce to the conversation. Dalton has lived an extraordinary life if this book is anything to go by, and some of the really interesting parts of her life were touched upon in only a paragraph or two, as if they were merely trivial parts to the story.
Originally from Sydney, Australia, Dalton moves to the UK in 1946, fitting in with high society and aristocratic types. The first two thirds of the book are give to the sharing of many varried tales of the people she shared life experiences with, both lovers and acquaintances. Although now, as with all memoirs, the significance of whom she interacted with is lost on the more modern readers. Her sense of adventure, her lack of comprehension of the value of money and her taste for living the good life all blend in together to make an interesting book.
The last third follows a more orderly path of her life and gives us an insight to a woman as tough and capable as she was daring and adventurous. Dalton is not afraid to use the female card to get what she wants and would probably bristle at the label or idea of being a feminist, of which she has no time for. She revels in her list of male conquests, with a list of lovers and marriage proposals as long as her arm.
This book speaks of a different life in a different time when the modern day rules we are hamstrung by didn’t exist and what rules and regulations there were were not so restrictive. Not shying away from heart break, Dalton leaves the impression that she knew how to make the most of life and took every opportunity to seize life and live it to the full.
I eagerly await my invitation to afternoon tea.