E's Reviews > Trespass

Trespass by Valerie Martin
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's review
Dec 15, 08

it was ok
bookshelves: fiction
Read in December, 2008

** spoiler alert ** Not the best of Valerie Martin. This book seems a little muddled - does it want to be fiction about a family, a story about the ravages and aftermath of the war in Croatia, or mystery fiction? While much of the set-up of characters at the beginning and the tone would lend toward the latter, the book as a whole really revolves around in circles, playing some characters and relationships with ominous overtones that never are developed. In retrospect, the more I think about the ending, the more it bothers me. Was it necessary to kill off Chloe, the mother, the one who, in essence, is right to be suspicious of the daughter-in-law, whose fears are fulfilled, so that the other characters, who don't seem too terribly distraught by her death, can have happily wrapped up and rounded off endings? Is this a morality tale - if you are too suspicious and fearful of the intentions of others, if you want to protect or worry about your not-quite-grown son, you will die? I don't think she was treated fairly. And, please, Brendan and Salome's Mom end up together? Based on what?Kill off the too-affable, everything's cool, milquetoast Brendan instead of Chloe, and see if there can't be a more interesting, jagged, and real ending.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Maggi I really agree with your review. I found the book fascinating at first and was disappointed when some of the plot lines were not developed and others were abandoned. The poacher turns into a groundless fear but the lesson is not learned because Chloe dies. Her death brings about an abrupt end to the discussion/interpretation of her artwork and somehow invalidates all that detail as well. It also invalidates her rather valid suspicions of Salome, who is also not trusted wholly by her son, yet this too goes nowhere in particular. The story of Salome's mother is wonderful but doesn't really fit. All in all, a book with great potential that is not crafted into all it could be.

message 2: by E (new) - rated it 2 stars

E Yes - it's as though Martin started Salome's mother as a minor character, then got carried away with her story - but it really belongs more appropriately in a different book.

Kirsten I too thought the book fell apart when Chloe died. She was the most interesting and "real" character. What purpose did it serve to kill her off. And the last three pages where Brendan pops his plan on Toby was just stupid. It was like the author just have up at the end. I also felt Jelena's story was unnecessary to the plot.

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