I managed not to read any of Dahl's works when I was a child so I've been slowly working through them this year. I heard nothing but praise for this o...moreI managed not to read any of Dahl's works when I was a child so I've been slowly working through them this year. I heard nothing but praise for this one, many people saying that it was their favorite of all his works. Maybe the charm was lost on me but I just didn't enjoy it all that much. (less)
I can't decide how I feel about this book so I may change the rating after mulling on it for a few days/weeks/whatever.
It took me a little bit to get...moreI can't decide how I feel about this book so I may change the rating after mulling on it for a few days/weeks/whatever.
It took me a little bit to get into this book. I didn't care for it much until the scene with Mrs. Danvers and Mrs. de Winters in Rebecca's room when you really get to see how awful Mrs. Danvers is. From then on I was very much interested in the story but I still feel like something was lacking. I can't put my finger on it though.
I also didn't really feel like the heroine had any personality...I can't think of any words to describe her and I honestly wasn't very interested in her character at all. I suppose that's part of the novel though as the focus is kind of on Rebecca and her remaining presence.
I must say that it was all beautifully written.(less)
This book was simply amazing. I connected with each and every character that Follett chose to use as narrators. Whether I loved them or hated them, th...moreThis book was simply amazing. I connected with each and every character that Follett chose to use as narrators. Whether I loved them or hated them, they each seemed real and I laughed with them, cried with them, and wanted to scream at them. Each character was complex including the ones I hated (looking at you William Hamleigh). Yes Phillip was stubborn and set in his (God's?) ways but he also genuinely cared for each and every person who he encountered, even if they had wronged him. Yes William was awful/horrible/evil but Follett also showed that he was insecure, desperately wanted his mother's approval, and fearful of going to hell for his actions.
The secondary characters were hit or miss for me. Some of them felt like they were well fleshed out, like Alfred, but others, like Martha, were mentioned a lot but didn't have any depth whatsoever.
The book seems to be very historically accurate. At several points in the novel I set it aside to go read up on different people/places/events on Wikipedia and Follett's accounts were right along the same lines. I even ended up spoiling something for myself by reading about it on Wikipedia first.
Overall, this book was amazing. I was skeptical about reading it at first since the building of a cathedral sounds really boring to be honest, but I'm so glad I did. This book is easily making it's way onto my favorite of all time shelf. I'm looking forward to reading other works by Follett.(less)
**spoiler alert** The premise had a lot going for it but I ended up feeling pretty bored and annoyed throughout most of the book. It was really predic...more**spoiler alert** The premise had a lot going for it but I ended up feeling pretty bored and annoyed throughout most of the book. It was really predictable too, which I hate.
As soon as Jem went up to the tower I knew what was going to happen and I didn't understand that she didn't realize that especially at the point that he was on the ledge too. As soon as they had sex I literally narrowed my eyes at the book, suspicious that she was going to wind up pregnant and low and behold, she does. I predicted that the gift would be passed to her child too. Those things didn't entirely spoil the book for me but it does take out some of the excitement.
Also I hate the whole middle part where they were running from the police. I mean, I get that the police force can be pretty corrupt and they were worried that Spider, as a young black man with a record, could wind up on the hook for the attack, but it still seemed kind of iffy that they would actually have come to any real trouble.
I may read the sequel. I'll at least put it on my TBR shelf for now. It does have a much higher rating, but reading the synopsis it sounds kind of like a replica of this book except with her son.
I was absorbed in this book from the first page until the last. I absolutely loved Sophia and Jenny. Sophia seemed believable as a character, as she w...moreI was absorbed in this book from the first page until the last. I absolutely loved Sophia and Jenny. Sophia seemed believable as a character, as she was only 15 her naivete fit perfectly, as did her stubbornness.
I had some problems with the "bad guy" characters since none of them had any depth and were clearly the antagonists I was supposed to root against the entire time. I prefer my villains to have a little more to them that just being flat out evil.
The story was really well paced, though, which let me overlook the characters' depth a bit. I had no idea that the events in the story happened so I didn't know what was going to happen and got to learn a snippet of history in the process of reading it.
The relationship between Sophia and Mr. Charleton was well developed. The last YA romance I read had insta-love so it was refreshing that not only was their relationship not like that at all, but it also wasn't that important of a plot point. Sophia wasn't especially interested in a romance and spent the entire novel avoiding being married off, so it fit that her romance was gradual and ended in a believable place.
Other reviews say that Jensen's other novels are even better so I'll definitely be checking those out.(less)
I felt like I should get around to reading this as it's one of the most popular classics and I'd been avoiding it for years. I read Emma in high schoo...moreI felt like I should get around to reading this as it's one of the most popular classics and I'd been avoiding it for years. I read Emma in high school and thought it was ok, but kind of boring and slow. I felt the same about this one. Jane Austen just really isn't my thing I suppose though I still want to read her other books just to get through some more classics.(less)