Paula's Reviews > The Birth House

The Birth House by Ami McKay
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's review
May 01, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: book-club
Read in May, 2008

This book was so good that I read it in a single day. I was completely captivated by the story, and even though I pretty much could see where it was going it didn't feel contrived at all. Beautifully told, and very thought-provoking.

The only reason I rated this down is because at times the narrative gets confused with the diary entries that are incorporated into the story; sometimes I got confused about what was going on in the literary present and what had happened in the past, what was actually being done versus what was being thought about, that kind of thing. And this confusion increased as the book went on because there were more entries, letters, and article clippings towards the end. I have no idea how this could have been amended, however.

Still Miss B. was a wonderful character (sometimes I felt like this story was being told in New Orleans instead of Nova Scotia!) and, even though at times Dora and other characters frustrated me by clinging to their bad husbands, I think that all of the characters were believable and dynamic. Overall, a very well-told, nicely-paced narrative.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Colleen I totally agree with you that the author tends to go back and forth between tenses and that it can get confusing. I found this especially when Lily Rose died, it was said she died then all of a sudden tells you what happened... I think it would have been more effective to just leave out the initial "she died" and just ellaborated on the actual occurance.

I also really liked how Dora went to Halifax to help aid in the explosion relief... It was nice how she constantly related to it throughout the book.

I was also frustrated, as you said, with the fact that Dora stayed with Archer even though he abused her etc...

all in all great book!

message 2: by Paula (last edited Sep 03, 2013 07:02PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Paula Agreed--I think I'm due to reread this book!

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