Royal Mail Elastic bands harm hedgehogs. If my British followers could sign the below petition I'd be really grateful.

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15 Mar 2011



George and Sabrina Pemberton arrive in the wilds at the North Carolina mountains to build a life together. Unlike any other woman the timber empire has ever seen, Serena oversees crews, hunts rattlesnakes and even saves her husband's life. But when Serena learns she will never bear a child, it sets in motion a course of events that will change the lives of everyone in the community.
...... Outer back cover.

FIRST SENTENCE: When Pemberton returned to the north Carolina mountains after three months in Boston settling his father's estate, among those waiting on the train platform was a young woman pregnant with Pemberton's child.

MEMORABLE MOMENT: An unlidded pine coffin leaned against the commissary's back wall, the deceased propped up inside. A placard bearing the words Rest In Peace had been placed on the coffin's squared head, but the corpse's tight-shouldered rigidity belied the notion, as if even in death Ledbetter anticipated another falling tree.

KEEP IT OR NOT?: A reading group book I shall be returning this and have no intention of buying a copy.A novel in which some of the characters actually existed though they are fictional representations, I would love to know how much truth there is in the telling of the story.

Not too sure what I made of this book if I'm being totally honest. Not a badly written story, it just wasn't a book for me.

'A story of passion and revenge ..... There has never been a heroine quite like this.' claimed The Times on the front cover.

Hmm, not too sure I would agree with this statement. Sad to say I just didn't get any sense of passion - not between husband and wife Serena and George Pemberton who seemed to share a love that was more obsessive than anything else and nor when it came down to 'passion' being the determining factor in the events that were to take place which, to me were, largely, too calculated to be passionate.

As for the heroine? I'm not too sure to which of the two characters The Times refers as neither Serena nor Rachel lived up to my idea of a heroine, the first being too cold and ruthless (dare I say verging on the psychopathic?) and the latter being, though a protective mother, somewhat a 'wet blanket'.

Actually it is probably the characters I have the most difficulty with as I'm one of those readers who generally speaking will put up with a poor plot if I 'like' the characters which I didn't as, with the author having very clearly defined ideas of just who the 'goodies' and the 'baddies' were, there was no 'middle ground' which led to fairly one dimensional people.

Too slow and plodding for my tastes, this novel took a long time to say little and was predictable in the extreme though to be fair there was a twist at the end which I wasn't expecting and almost missed as I felt the story had ended with chapter thirty seven only to discover that there was in fact a 'chapter thirty eight' though it was not labelled as such and almost seemed to have been added as an afterthought - an afterthought that though not expected seemed a little ludicrous.

Set in the late 1920's during the time of the 'Great Depression' I did think that this angle of the story was covered well and that you got a real feel of just what  hard times times they were. Also wonderfully captured was the somewhat 'gallows humour' of the loggers which I really delighted in as I did the glorious descriptions of the landscape.

The 24th book read for my 100+ Reading Challenge, this was a reading group read.


Misha said...

I had this book on my wishlist, but I am not so excited about it now. Unlikable characters and slow pace put me off the book.

Thanks for the review!

Vivienne said...

I hadn't heard of this one before, but I don't think it is for me either.

Arti said...

The settings looked good enough for the story, woods, mountains... But as you said it is too slow and really can be given a miss...
I so love the way you review them Tracy. Have a nice day:-)

GMR said...

You win lose some. This one falls in the "lose" side for me, but I enjoyed the review just the same. Happy reading!

Suko said...

This doesn't sound like my kind of book, either. Not much to keep my attention. Good review.

Kelly said...

I'm not familiar with this book, but you do describe a few interesting aspects (dealing with the depression and the gallows humor). Still, I probably won't seen this one out.

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

Great first sentence!! I haven't seen this one before!

raji said...

Hi petty ..I rarely read books these days.I love the way you review the books.But this time seems like you really didn't like the story that much..You didn't go into the details though.Please try adding the story in short with the end too:)I know doesn't make sense for the readers like you for the efforts you put to read the entire book right?

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Thanks for the honest review. Don't think it is for me. I like the era it was set, but hm... just doesn't look like it would live up to what I would like.

Jenners said...

You need to get some better books to read. You seem to have more misses than hits.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Great honest review. I've not heard of the book before. But I don't know if it would be for me either. :) Thanks!

....Petty Witter said...

Raji: Firstly, many thanks for your comment, I appreciate your support as well as that of the others who have commented.
The reason I don't go into too many details and NEVER add the ending is because I'm aware that other bloggers may wish to read the book and could be annoyed if I included any 'spoilers' which gave away too much of the plot. That said, I'm only too happy to discuss any books read in greater detail with an individual if they so wish ..... just somewhere other than on my blog. I do hope this clarifies things for you.

raji said...

Hi Petty ..I understand that..:)Thanks for sharing your thoughts on tht.

Sanand said...

This seems like a book to avoid, isn't it?