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Doesn't do what it says on the tin!
The Kinsella Sisters - Kate Thompson
Member Name: lonestarsky
The Kinsella Sisters - Kate Thompson
Date: 14/07/09, updated on 14/07/09 (53 review reads)
Advantages: A couple of likeable characters, nice description
Disadvantages: Weak plot, some not so likeable characters, not as good as the blurb suggests
I cam across this book in a charity shop and although I had never heard of the book or the author, the blurb on the back sounded interesting. Two feuding sisters are reunited after their father's death, and they discover a family secret which may change their lives forever. I adore stories that focus on family dynamics and even moreso those which have a family secret so I eagerly snapped this one up.
The story starts well...very well. First of all there is a prologue that sets the scene for the rest of the story. And the first couple of chapters had me hooked, particularly the discovery of two kimonos which has a somewhat sinister undertone. I was hoping for lots of family mystery and intrigue as the sisters delve deeper into their parents' past but unfortunately for me the book headed off in a completely different direction.
This book is essentially a story about relationships of the romantic kind. Which is OK if that's your sort of thing but as its not the sort of book I enjoy. And what made it more of a let-down was the fact I was looking forward to a story of a very different kind.
The story is told in third person from three points of view and the descriptions of the Irish village of Lissamore, where the story is set, are spot-on, although I didn't find the scenes set in Thailand were so well-written. The two sisters, Rio and Dervla, are likeable enough characters, albeit very stereo-typed. Rio is the earth-mother, hippy type whereas Dervla is career-driven and unsentimental. They fell out many years ago but after their fathers death they reunite. I must admit that I found their sudden, blissful reconciliation a bit odd, even though they had just lost their father (whom they were not that fond of anyway) but as I was enjoying the story at this point I wasn't too bothered.
Rio is very close to her only son Finn and I found their relationship touching. Finn is also a likeable character but I can't say I was fond of any of the other characters, which was another reason I wasn't enamoured with this book. I absolutely despised Izzy. Some of the story is told from her point of view, and although the author has made her seem down-to-earth in spite of her rich background, she still came across as a spoilt little madam, and her concern for her father came across as self-centred rather than genuine. I didn't enjoy the chapters from her point of view and found myself skimming some of them. And due to this dislike, her friendship with Finn annoyed me as I didn't want a nice boy like him befriending someone like her!!!
Adair, Christian and Shane are the three love interests in the book. I can't say I had much of an opinion for their characters. They all seemed nice - I can't say any more than that. And they were all far too good looking. Another thing that jarred me about this book was that everyone was so attractive and - with the exception of Rio and Finn - so rich!!!
The plot essentially has very little to do with the "family secret" they unearthed. It shakes the sisters, no doubt about that. But the plot is less about them coming to terms with it and more about.....I don't know...because there wasn't really a plot. Lack of an obvious plot doesn't bother me as a rule as it's not necessary if the writing or theme is bold enough. But I didn't feel this book had any of the three, which gave it a somewhat wishy-washy feel.
The ending was open, but in a positive way, which was quite nice. The first chapter of the sequel was given at the end, but to be honest I was so glad to have finally finished the book that I didn't read it, plus I don't care enough about the characters to find out what happens next.
This book has had lots of positive reviews, not just on here but on other sites. But it simply wasn't for me. I would say give it a read if you like romantic stories you can lose yourself in. But beware - the blurb on the back is very misleading!
Summary: I wish I could be more positive about this book, but I can't. Sorry!