Books Read in 2014 – 29. Rabbits in the Garden by Jessica McHugh

Genre: Horror, Madness

Narrative Style: Third person chronological10504227

Rating 1/5

Format: Kindle

Published 2011

Synopsis: Life is perfect for Avery – she is in love with her best friend, Paul, and he loves her too. They have just shared a first kiss. However, trouble starts
when Avery’s mother finds out about the liaison and is determined to stop her daughter from taking the wrong path.

It’s not often that I give a book 1 star. Usually because if something is that bad, I don’t finish it. I’ve always hated doing that and even more so now that I add books on Goodreads. I feel obliged to get to the end. Even if, like this novel, it is a real struggle.

I picked this book because I liked the sound of the story and because it has a lot of good reviews. And it did start well with the appearance of Avery’s mother’s madness being quite well executed.

However, it went downhill fast. Events are easy to spot and there were little in the way of surprises. For example, when Natalie meets a handsome stranger, it is obvious that it is Paul. When she mentions that they did not use a condom, it obvious that she will be pregnant. When Avery’s mother appears the next morning, just in time to tell them of their real identities, it all just seems like a bit too big a coincidence. The whole novel is like that. events and characters are bent to the plot with no care as to whether that seems likely or not.

There are pages of unlikely dialogue which slow the action down. The characters often sound like they are spouting platitudes rather than having a conversation. it was like reading a bad made for TV film.

Even the ending was not that satisfying. There was never any doubt that Avery would win in the end. The lack of narrative tension was one reason why I struggled to finish this. Everything moves in Avery’s favour. The police do not find her. She manages to escape. She will live happily ever after. Even though she does suffer setbacks – like the loss of Paul – it never daunts Avery and the reader knows exactly how things will come to pass.

 

 

 

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