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==Synopsis of the book:==
Grace Sherman thought her life was going just fine until her husband Dan disappeared one day. They had met at High School where they had been Childhood sweethearts. They had two grown up girls Kelly and Maryellen. Now almost six months later and still no word or sign of Dan Grace files for divorse as she feels she needs to start her life again on her own, with the help of her remaining family and friends from Cedar Cove. Although Grace knows in her heart of hearts Dan has never really been the same since his experiences in Vietnam.
But with her divorce coming through Grace meets a man, Cliff who is instantly taken with her. Grace feels unsure and not ready for a new relationship having spent so many years as a wife and mother. While at the same time her Children's lives are also changing, Kelly has just had a baby and Maryellen is dating a mystery man. Grace needs to know the truth about her husband and why he walked out on her without a word. Someone claimed to see him in town after he disappeared with another woman. Grace must know what really happened this would allow her to move on much easier.
==My thoughts on the novel:==
Overall I thought this was a disappointing piece of fiction. I like to challenge myself to read all different styles and types of books and I certainly feel I did that by completing this one. That is because it was a real Chic Lit and usually something I would not try. As I find stories involving love and emotions difficult to stomach and something I cannot relate to. Give me a good murder and I am in my element!!
However that was not my only reason why I struggled with this novel. The second reason was it is an author I am not familiar with. As I usually find it takes a novel or two for me to get used to and appreciate an authors style and way of presenting a story. That said Debbie Macomber is certainly not a new author as she is an acclaimed international writer with over 150 books under her belt already. With this book I am reviewing being her second of twelve so far in the Cedar Cove trilogy. It was written in 2002.
Certainly within the author's background I can see why I struggled a bit with this book. That is because Debbie is an American author and as a rule I struggle to enjoy the difference between their culture and ours because everything seems so very different. There way of life is something I do not feel I can relate too and their ideology is differs from our own. And this story is clearly set in America and deals with the American way of life.
But not only that this is the second in a series of stories, so the logical thing would be to start with the first one. However I don't do logic and I think it is a good test to read the books out of order to see if you can pick up what is going on quickly and understand where you are. However I felt lost most of the way through and only at the end did I understand why the book had the title was called what it was, I kept expecting the penny to drop but it didn't until the very end.
I found this book at a Car Boot recently. It wasn't my first choice of from the seller but at only 20p I didn't think I could go far wrong. I did ponder a little at the cover of it, but I thought I should not judge it by this so I flipped it over to see what the story was about. This summary was really interesting and I liked the idea of a mystery about Grace Sherman's husbands disappearance and I thought it sounded interesting and something I would enjoy.
When I started reading the story I felt there was not enough background information on the characters and their situations. Maybe this was because it was the second in the series I just felt I had picked up a story half the way through. The story moved quickly from character to character and I found it difficult to remember who was who as all the female characters seemed to be thinking off or beginning relationships with new man. I think the author would have been far better to spend more time with one character and have longer chapters focusing just on this one character then move on to the next. I really struggled to remember additionally who was related to how and how knew and was friends with who/
I found the story slow and disappointing. I always felt it would be a happy ever after story with all this single ladies experiencing worries with their new relationships. But I felt the story lacked real substance and I kept expecting something exciting to happen. And the main reason for reading the book the disappearance of Grace's husband really turned out to be only a very minor aspect of it. I kept expecting this to take effect and the mystery to unfold but it was covered in little detail and was ultimately disappointing.
As the story developed I just didn't feel it was leading anywhere. Yes things where happening to the characters but they to me seemed run of the mill things that happen in peoples lives everyday of the week. And now looking back at it I am struggling to remember key and important facts within it. I kept thinking at the end of the story everything would be resolved but I really didn't get that feeling, yes some issues where resolved, but some still you felt had a long way to run to be concluded. So in a sense I felt the story was not concluded and while for a fan of this series it may work it certainly didn't for me.
I thought the main character in this story would be Grace Sherman and the story would focus around her. But I was surprised that she was only of several characters the story followed. Yes admittedly the story did return to Grace several times throughout the story but I felt the author should have spent more time with her as she was a good character and I felt I did not know her as well as I should. She was easy to like and relate to I just felt the majority of the focus should have been on her and not all the other ladies from Cedar Cove.
Before writing my review I wanted to see how my views on this book differed from other readers and I was stunned. Clearly I have missed something as these reviewers where giving it either 4 or 5 stars. Where as I thought this was a disappointing story that lacked really direction. I could see that the emotions that characters shared where quite insightful and understandable plus well thought through I just didn't feel their was enough depth within the story itself.
I am glad I tried this adventure story as I can at least say I've tried a Debbie Macomber book. It was not a book I enjoyed and feel I gained little from reading it. I would have preferred the author focused more on the main characters rather than skipping from character to character as I felt by doing this it lacked depth and I did not get to know or understand the characters as well as I would have liked.
Price: 1.99 new at Amazon
Publisher: Mira Books
ISBN-13: 978- 0778302926
Year first published: 2002
More about the author: www.debbiemacomber.com
Thanks for reading my review.
This review is published under my user name on both Ciao and Dooyoo.
© CPTDANIELS May 2012.