Skip to main content

Review of "The Other Daughter" by Lauren Willig

the other daughterLast week, I started a free trial of Audible.com and decided to use the opportunity to "read" Willig's standalone novel.  I love her Pink Carnation novels and since this took place in the 1920's I was ecstatic.  I don't know if I built it up in my head since I'd waited so long for it, but it wasn't what I expected.  That doesn't mean it is a bad book--it isn't.  It was just missing something.  I wish I knew what that was.

Rachel's world has been turned upside down.  On the heels of finding out that her mother is dead, she learns that the father she believed dead never really died and has been living with another family for the last 23 years.  Rachel isn't sure what she wants, but she has to find him so he can explain why he left the way he did.

 

My main issue with The Other Daughter is that Rachel isn't all that likable.  She doesn't know what she wants and spends a good portion of the book vacillating between getting revenge for what she sees as a slight on her and her mother and simply wanting answers. Does she want to make her father pay?  The brother and sister that she didn't know?  It was exhausting.

Then, there are the other characters.  Rachel's sister, Olivia, is a doormat because she didn't live up to her mother's expectations.  Olivia's fiancé is a douche to the 1000th degree and deserved to be shot for the way he treated Olivia and Rachel.  As for Simon, it is hard to tell what he wants most of the time.  We never get anything from his point of view, so all we know is what Rachel tells us.  Since she doesn't know him well neither do we.  He was the one thing I was as confused about as Rachel was.  He says he loves Rachel, but we don't feel it.  There is no slide into love for them.  I felt more of a connection between him and Olivia than there was between him and Rachel.  I was actually pulling for that relationship for most of the book.

What I did like: this wasn't a predictable novel by any means.  There was never a point at which I thought that I knew what was going to happen.  When I thought Willig was going to take the narrative left, she went right.  I love that.

The prose was also one of The Other Daughter's saving grace.  Willig does not know how to write a bad book.  It isn't possible.  Her words are indescribably great in everything she writes and this was no different.

Last, there is the narration by Nicola Barber.  This was my first audiobook, so I don't have anything to compare it to, but Ms. Barber was definitely a fun narrator.  One of the things that surprised me was the fact that she did voices.  None of the characters sounded exactly the same, although it was sometimes hard to tell the male characters apart because it seemed harder for her to vary her lower register.  I can't do any voices, so I don't hold that against her.

3.5 Stars

 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Happy Bookaversary! A Review of "Edge of Darkness" by Karen Rose

Title: Edge of Darkness
Author: Karen Rose
ISBN: 9780399583087
Publisher: Berkeley
Series: Cincinnati Series
Price: $5.98 (Paperback) $7.99 (e-book) $28.28(Audible)
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️


It seems like I've been reading Karen Rose novels my entire life.  I remember the day I came across Count to Ten in the Duane Reade on Queens Blvd.  I'd finished the paperback I brought with me to school that day while sitting in the Dining Hall eating lunch and needed something for the long bus ride home.  I almost didn't buy it because it was $9.99 and I hadn't gotten my financial aid money yet, but the cover copy called to me.  Not even the 500+ page count could scare me away.

I recently learned that Edge of Darkness is Ms. Rose's 20th book and in a strange way, I feel like a proud mama watching her child cross the stage to get their diploma.  I'm just a big ball of happy nostalgia, thinking back to all of the other books I've read by her and hopeful about the ones to come, so befor…

Fifteen Years Later: Review of "His Sinful Touch" by Candace Camp

Title: His Sinful Touch
Author: Candace Camp
ISBN: 0373789963
Publisher: HQN
Series: Mad Morelands #5
Price: $5.98 (Paperback) $5.99 (e-book) $19.96(Audible)
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2


Most readers remember their first, the first book of their particular genre that they read, whether they enjoyed the book or not.  I have two firsts--the first romance I ever read was a Harlequin Intrigue written by Amanda Stevens.  If you've read my blog before you probably already know this.  The first historical romance I read was Mesmerized by Candace Camp, which was also the first book in her Mad Morelands series.  

I was a senior in high school when this series began and I remember seeing the paperback version of Mesmerized on the shelf at the Target on Queens Blvd (yes, I spent a lot of time on Queens Blvd as a teenager), and was pulled in by the gorgeous cover.  Apparently, that book has had several covers over the last 15 years, but this is the one I remember:


Isn't it pretty?  Of course from the cover I…

The Internet of Things: Review of "Hacking IT" by Kimberly Dean

Title: Hacking IT
Author: Kimberly Dean
ISBN: 9781386835561
Publisher: Self-published
Series: Hackers #1
Price: $3.99 (e-book) $9.99 (paperback)
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1/2


Have you ever seen the description of a book and known immediately that it was going to be awesome and upon reading it were faced with the possibility that it might actually be better than you originally thought?  For me, that book was Hacking IT by Kimberly Dean.  A female white hat hacker using her skills to uncover a black hat hacker, who has stepped away from his computer and entered the real world?  Um, yes, please.

From the Publisher:
Independent software developer Kylie Grant is on top of her game in the world of IT. She has loyal clients, a good reputation, and a prestigious membership in technology giant Afire Industries’ small business accelerator. Things are going well until she stumbles across an innocuous issue with the lighting in the building where she rents space. When she digs into the problem, she discovers some…

Review of "Come Sundown" by Nora Roberts

Title: Come Sundown
Author: Nora Roberts
ISBN: 1250123070
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Price: $14.99 (e-book) $16.49 (hardcover) $23.95 (Audible)
Rating:⭐️⭐️

I read my first Nora Roberts novel when I was a 16-year-old high school junior.  I remember seeing her books in all of the drug stores long before the fateful day on which I decided to actually buy one but had never thought anything of them.  From that day on, La Nora became the gold standard--the author all others had to live up to, the one to beat.  I remember sitting at my mom's kitchen table with one of her paperbacks and a sheet of paper, marking down which of her books were available at the libraries near me.  Her backlog was (and still is) immense and I was going to read them all.  While I still haven't read all of her books, I've read a good chunk of them, many of which have a place on my virtual keeper shelf, which is why I was so deeply disappointed in Come Sundown.

From the PublisherA novel of suspense, fam…

Review of "Ace of Spades" by Sandra Owens

Title: Ace of Spades
Author: Sandra Owens
ISBN: 9781503948990
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Series: Aces & Eights #3
Price: $4.99 (e-book) $9.17 (paperback) Free (Kindle Unlimited)
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️

I was really excited for this book.  I devoured the entire K2 series a couple of years ago, but somehow I missed the first two books of the Aces and Eights series.  I'd hoped that I'd be able to jump right into this book without having read the others, and in a way I was able to do so as the main plot had nothing to do with the others.  However, I feel that had I known the characters' backgrounds a little bit more, I would have felt more of a connection to them, which would have helped me have a better reading experience.


From the Publisher:
Two FBI agents struggle with desire in the shadow of a killer, in the third installment of Aces & Eights. Nate Gentry has been a rock for his two younger brothers since the day their mom walked out and left them with their abusive father. Now that…