“ Genre: Crime/Thriller / Author: Fern Michaels / ISBN: 9780727864291 / Publication Date: 2008 / Publisher: Berkley „
==Synopsis of the book:==
There is a group called the Pinewood Ladies whose mission it is to right wrongs that have been done to them. These influential and in the main wealthy ladies use all the tools available to them to achieve their missions. These seven, Myra,Kathryn, Isabelle, Nikki, Alex, Anna and Yoko are supported by Charles who supplied all the information technology to give the girls the edge in whatever their campaign they are undertaking.
It is Yoko Akia's turn to select her mission for the team. It in theory is a simple one she wants to avenge her mother's death and inflict pain on the man she holds responsible for this, her father. As her mother was bought to America when she was just fifteen by her father who after using her himself tried to bring her into a life of prostitution. However she fell pregnant and died in the gutter soon after giving birth to Yoko. Now 30 years later she wants to avenge this the only problem is this despicable man has two sides. On the one he is a sick pervert who uses his money to bring poor girls into a life of degradation and prostitution but on the other he is a very successful actor and one with a cleaner than clean image. The ladies of Pinewood will have their work cut out to bring this Successful and powerful man crashing down to earth and fore-fill Yoko's mission.
==My thoughts on this novel:==
My overall opinion of this adventure novel was it was quite disappointing and really like bite and credibility. The reason I say this was in my opinion everything was a little bit too easy for this group of ladies to achieve whatever they choose to do. And while I except and understand each of the team has talents I found what they where trying to do far too easy and as a result for me made what they achieved hard to believe.
Admittedly though this is my first experience of both this author and this series of stories. For the author Fern Michaels is a highly successful writer and a best-selling New York author. Who has written over 50 books in a variety of series since her début book back in 1973. The book I selected was the seventh in the Sisterhood revenge series, this collection accounts for 20 of these books alone.
So in several ways I was not on a 'sticky wicket' to start with. This is because with it being the seventh in the series a lot had gone before and it was referred back to quite often in the story and I would feel as a result confused and often bemused. As a result of this all the ladies in the Sisterhood had their own roles in the group which took me a newby to these stories quite a while to understand and recognise who was who.
The second reason why I was unlikely to really enjoy this story was because it was quite American. It was written by an American author and she told the reader the story set in Virginia, America, with American characters. Please don't misunderstand what I am trying to say here, I have nothing against America or American people it is I do not understand really understand or appreciate their culture. For example the space American people enjoy compare to what we have in this country, the different pressures on the people to live up to different set of expectations.
I discovered this book at a car boot sale and it cost me just 30p. So from that point of view I could have no complaints. I was drawn in by the summary of the story in the inside cover of the book. It was a fair size and the initial concept of this lady Yoko wanting revenge on the father she had never known interested me. I also knew nothing of this Sisterhood and I liked the idea of them trying to right previous wrongs.
My initial confidence that this might be an excellent read was also supported by the fact the story began and also finished with a prologue and an epilogue. I always like a story particularly when its a new author to me to have an introduction into what the story is going to be about. This one did that introducing Yoko and why she wanted revenge on her father.
However once the story in earnest began I found myself frustrated trying to understand exactly what was going on and who was on whose side. I felt the author needed to explain in more detail who was who with more background. As I was totally at sea and even for regular readers of the series it doesn't hurt to have little reminders. As a result I felt frustrated and struggled to take in exactly what was happening.
And while as I have already said I liked the idea of these ladies seeking revenge I found their relationship with each other quite unbelievable. They where ridiculously supportive of one another and there was never a crossed word and they all seemed to understand eachothers thoughts. For an old cynic like me I found it too good to be true and it just made me want to laugh it was so sickly sweet.
However things did improve and the speed of the story soon began to speed up. When this happened the action was both good and exciting as I felt I had no idea how this mission could be completed. It was this sense of the unexpected that really made it interesting as previously everything had been planned out in the most minute of detail and we had no idea what form this revenge might be.
I found this part of the story very enjoyable and this continued against my expectations. There was me thinking the answers would be easy but there certainly were not and I was highly impressed with what transpired. But this was only short lived as the epilogue brought me right back down with a crash and left me with a disappointed final feeling about what I had read. As I thought the author had again created something good only to dash it all in the name of simplicity that again lacked beggared belief.
Quite against my expectations when I picked up the book I expected the story to just be written from Yoko Akia's perspective but it certainly wasn't. I think this did help the story because you got to understand not only the feelings of the ladies of Pinewood but also the other key characters in the story. Although again for me more depth on some interesting characters would have helped me and helped me understand them more.
So quite unusually this story did not have a main character and some of the 'baddies' got as much coverage as the 'goodies'. Which I think initially confused me when reading the story as I kept thinking there would be an unexpected twist and I would see the light. And as a result of this lack of depth and background I found I never really liked or took to any of the characters within the story.
I found the story quite a light read and one that did not really either make me think or tax me. It did take a while to really get going but when it did it was good in the main. The length of the book for me was too short as I thought the author could and should have extended the end of the story and wasted an opportunity to create a really good well thought out ending in favour of, when you just have to read it to find out that!!
My first experience of Fern Michaels writing I'm afraid is negative as I found this book ultimately disappointing. I thought the authors concept for revenge was good it was just there was so much in the story that was hard to believe and it was in parts quite confusing. Certainly on this form I do not recommend this book, but I feel I must try another in this series just to see how it compares and contrasts with this one.
For the Paperback version:
Price: 3.21 at Amazon
Year of Publication: 2006
More about the author: www.fernmichaels.com
Thanks for reading.
This review is published under my user name on both Dooyoo and Ciao.
© CPTDANIELS November 2011.