11 Oct 2011



Solomon is full of anger - with the teachers and his father who have failed him, with his mother who has left him, and also with himself. He cannot bear to be at school or home. His refuge is one corner of the kirkyard, where nothing flourishes except a single rowan tree. Then workmen uproot the tree, and, as it dies, a terrible force comes to life.

Can Solomon find the strength to fight the ancient and evil power which has been unleashed?
...... Outer back cover.

FIRST SENTENCE (Chapter 1): My footprints track across the faint dew still lying on the grass.

MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 105): Licking at the dark corners of your mind, searching out the flaws, the imperfections. Spreading doubt and mistrust. Feeding on fear, becoming ever more powerful.

KEEP IT OR NOT?: I shall be passing this onto Niece #2 (13)

Sounds wonderful, doesn't it?

And it would have been if the blurb on the back cover was totally accurate. Sadly though it wasn't and what we got was the story of Solomon's rather dysfunctional relationships and unfolding special educational needs with a side order of his adventures in the kirkyard - not that this wasn't a good story, it just wasn't altogether the story I had been expecting.

Written I believe with 12 to 14 year olds in mind, this is, in parts, an eerie tale but what made it really interesting to me was the way in which the author incorporated Scottish legends and historical truths - fascinating stuff, I learnt a lot about the superstitions surrounding death in times long gone. The downside? The lack of any real suspense. Sure the story was gripping at times but the author did not seem to be able to hold onto this and, almost like a breath of air exhaled at great speed, everything seemed to come hurtling out at once, leaving very little else.

A charity shop purchase, the 78th book read for my 100+ Reading Challenge.


Mary (Bookfan) said...

Sometimes it seems the person who writes the blurb hasn't read the book! And don't get me started on covers that have absolutely nothing to do with the book. About suspense: I don't read much but when I do I prefer it to build instead of all at once. I hope your niece enjoys it :)

Arti said...

Looked a good read but sadly it did not do full justice... I like the suspense to unfold slowly, layer by layer...
Have a nice day Tracy:)

Kelly said...

I hate it when the blurb doesn't match the story - just as I hate when the blurb tells me too much of it!

I do like the blue on the cover.

GMR said...

Aw, shucks. I had such high hopes for it after reading the blurb as well...and the cover simply helped that need to read along. Oh well...cie la vie. Better luck next time!

Vivienne said...

Oh what a shame! The title and the blurb had me drooling!

joan said...

hi thanks for commenting on my blog
are you serious about signing up for a swap ? its over on Ravelry you join a group that you like the look of and sooner or later a swap is set up simples
its good fun and you don't have to be experienced in anything

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Well, at least it wasn't a horrible book. Maybe your niece will like it more.

Suko said...

It sounds as if you enjoyed certain aspects of this book, Petty. Congrats on reading your 78th book--you are more than three-quarters of the way through the 100(+) challenge!

Monalisa said...

Whooshyy... I used to love horror stories sometime in childhood. I'm sure your niece will like it.

anilkurup said...

Getting conned by the advert

Betty Manousos@ Cut and Dry said...

it's no good when the blurb doesn't match the story.

what a shame...it looked like a good book.

...and congratulationss on reading your 78th book. it doesn't surprise me though.
i know how amazing you are!

naida said...

That is a shame. The blurb and cover look good.