I had the same reaction to the Radiant Way that I had to Needle's Eye, I'm not sure if I truly liked it. I think part of the reason is that I found Way to be frustrating in the sense that I knew Drabble was making a comment on British society of a particular time, but since I lacked knowledge about the society of that time, it felt like some things went over my head. I know it's supposed to refer to Britain's Second Nation, but as I am not entirely sure what that is, the references confused me. I also found most of the characters annoying in the sense that they were so passive. What saves the book is the fourth character, the narrator, who is very snide and who reminds me of a gossip. I found myself wanting to get know that character more instead of the three central women.