Thursday, July 29, 2010

#114 Bride Island by Alexandra Enders

This book was one of my $1.99 finds at!  I love those discounted books and sometimes I find real gems in there.  This wasn't a gem per se, but it was decent.

From Publishers Weekly

Polly Birdswell has been sober for four years and deems herself fit to regain custody of seven-year-old Monroe, whom she left as a baby, but her ex-husband disagrees. In addition to fighting for Monroe, Polly also wants the Maine island—home of childhood vacations and the sacred ground where her brother died—that her hard-drinking stepfather wants to sell. Polly's obsession with the island becomes as tiresome as the uninspired prose. Though novels of abandoned daughters may abound, stories from the mother's perspective are less common; unfortunately, the issue is hardly explored and what could have been provocative falls flat. Polly is repeatedly asked how she could have given up Monroe, but Enders fails to grasp the opportunity to give an insightful answer. Efforts to signify the island as a place of healing and salvation are heartfelt, but dull characters mired in a plodding plot defeat a promising concept.
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While I have to agree with the above that where it had so much potential, it did fall flat.  The book never truly explores what led to Polly giving her daughter to her ex-husband.  Yes it says she was an alocoholic, but to me it seemed that it was not an agonizing decision for her but years later she feels bad so she wants her daughter back.  It also seems more that the decision was pushed upon her by her family and friends, not because of any soul searching or that she thought she was really the best parent for her daughter.

While it was intruiging enough to get me into it, I don't think it fully lived up to the potential it had.  The whole island business seemed more like a distraction than any real part of the story.  If I had to give it a letter grade I would say a C-.

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