28 Jan 2014




SOURCE: A Christmas present.

One father: two daughters: fifty wives.

They're waiting for Salvation. Pray it never comes.

In the wake of a suspicious fire, Amaranth gathers her barely-teenage daughters, Amity and Sorrow, and flees from the rural fundamentalist cult run by her husband. 

After four days on the run, Amaranth crashes the car, leaving the family stranded at a gas station, innocent and stranded.

Rescue comes in the unlikely form of a downtrodden farmer, a man who offers sanctuary. But while Amity blooms in this new world, free from her father's tyranny, Sorrow will do anything to get back home. And Amaranth herself needs to know what happened to the other wives, the other children.

Amity and Sorrow is a story about God, sex, and farming;  an unforgettable journey into the horrors a true believer can inflict upon his family. It is the gripping story of these remarkable women, the beauty and suffering of their former lives and their heartbreaking, hopeful, doubtful future. 

..... Inner Front cover

FIRST SENTENCE: Two sisters sit , side by side, in the backseat of an old car.

MEMORABLE MOMENT {Page 127}: They could stuff sausages at four years of age but they couldn't write their names down, so the devil couldn't trick them into signing his book.

MY THOUGHTS: I don't know about not judging a book by its cover but I certainly wish I hadn't been so influenced by this particular book cover which was the thing (followed by several positive blog reviews) that initially attracted me.

A novel about what happens when a mother, Amaranth, (one of no less than 50 wives) and her two daughters (Amity, 12, and Sorrow, 14) escape a polygamous cult. I was hoping for a good, possibly insightful, read into a lifestyle that fascinates me. Instead of which I got this dull read which was anything but.

With a story line that jumped from the present day which saw the women living on a rural farm to the past which told of their lives as one of a multitude of women/siblings living on what can only be described as a compound. Thank goodness the chapter headings differentiated between the two making a confusing read slightly less so.

Combined with the fact that as the story progresses Sorrow's story becomes one of less depth and one of what I felt was mere sensationalism and the author's awful tendency to pose a conundrum (how did Amaranth come to be caught up in the cult? Just who did set fire to the 'temple'?) only to defer the 'answer' until it is a distant memory that I had long since lost any real interest in or her even worse habit of beginning to explore an issue without ever running with it I ultimately found Amity and Sorrow a frustrating read with little to recommend it.

Copyright: Tracy Terry @ Pen and Paper. All original content on http://pettywitter.blogspot.co.uk/ is created by the website owner, including but not limited to text, design, code, images, photographs and videos are considered to be the Intellectual Property of the website owner, whether copyrighted or not, and are protected by DMCA Protection Services using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act Title 17 Chapter 512 (c)(3). Reproduction or re-publication of this content is prohibited without permission. In addition I would also urge that if you are reading this on any other page you contact the original blog owner/reviewer.


Literary Feline said...

I have a copy of this one on my e-reader to read, but keep putting it off because it's been getting such mixed reviews. I love the premise, but it sounds like the execution isn't so great.

carol said...

It's a shame this one didn't work for you. It sounds like the set-up had promise.

Kelly said...

"Amity and Sorrow is a story about God, sex, and farming" For some reason, that quote from the cover of the book made me laugh. It just seems an odd combination!

It might have initially attracted me somewhat, but based on your review, I think I can safely pass on it.

Karen said...

That's too bad. It could be a fascinating story if told right.

I also thought this quote ""Amity and Sorrow is a story about God, sex, and farming" was odd.

It made me wonder if this is supposed to be funny, thought provoking or something else.

Shooting Stars Mag said...

Sorry this one wasn't as interesting as it seems. I do love the cover; sometimes it's best not to look at a cover too much.

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Aw... too bad it didn't work. I'm wondering if it took on too many themes to really work what they were trying to convey. Trying to convey too many things? Hm.. still doesn't seem like the book for me. Great review though!

Suko said...

This sounded more promising to me as well. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts about this book, Tracy.

Stephanie@Fairday's Blog said...

I can see why the cover drew you in! It caught my eye too. The story line sounds fascinating and I would hope to be enlightened about a different way of life, too. I appreciated your honest review, and I am sorry you didn't enjoy more. Thanks for sharing.

Alexia561 said...

Thank you for such an honest review! Sorry that this one didn't live up to it's promise, as polygamy can be such a fascinating subject!

Gina R said...

Oh my. Sounds like this one failed in execution. Bummer. Better luck next time around....thanks for the share all the same!

Brian Joseph said...

Too bad that this was so disappointing. i agree that the plot had lots of potential. I also agree that it has a great cover.

Claudine G. said...

Tracy, the cover is very attractive. I'd have picked it up, too. After reading your review, mmmh ... perhaps not!

Betty Manousos said...

that's too bad. sorry this one was so disappointing. as always, thank you for your honest review.


Charlie (The Worm Hole) said...

Sorry to hear you didn't like this one. Like Literary Feline I've a copy but have put off reading it so far. Well done on What's In A Name. It may not have been a good book but it added to your challenges :)