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The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe
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's review
Aug 03, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: audiobooks, fiction
Read in August, 2009

Listened to the audiobook - not sure whether that had a true effect on my rating, although the narrator's voice annoyed me at times...

The story had an interesting premise, but quickly devolved into banalities and stereotypes: grad student down on her luck in life and in relationships, discovers a family secret dating back 300 years, meets a guy, dramatic events unfold... it just seemed like there was nothing new and exciting here. Connie, the protagonist, seems to have a real chip on her shoulder regarding some people and groups... some of the things she said and did seemed immature, unethical, and generally unlikable.

On a personal note: for goodness sake, the whole notion of archivists and librarians as being annoyed by patrons and "shushing" all the time is SO overdone. Did this book really have to add to it with each archivist or librarian the protagonist met? Sure, I am sensitive to that as an archivist myself, but come on.

Not sure about the time of this story either - it was never clear why the modern side of the story took place in 1991. Was it to nearly coincide with the anniversary of the Salem witch trials in 1692? If so, that was never expressed. The date seemed random, and there were a few times when I thought to myself, "was that around in `91?"

However, I kept on listening, somewhat curious how it was all going to end up. Part 2 was better than Part 1, but I was left shaking my head on this one. There are better accounts and novels about the witch trials and/or colonial New England.
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Reading Progress

08/02/2009 page 90
24.26% "I can't believe how trite and stereotypical this book is... yet, I keep on listening. Hoping for more..."
08/02/2009 page 160
43.13% "So trite and stereotypical - but it is a decent audiobook to knit to..."
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Julie I was starting to think that I'm the only person who gets totally annoyed by some narrators. For me that makes all the difference in whether or not I listen to an audiobook.

Leslie I think that one reason it was as early as '91, apart from the 300th anniversary, which may have been why she chose that particular year, is because of the incredibly done to death "uptight kid of an unreconstructed hippie mother" angle. I also found myself distracted by wondering if "X" technology was available or at that point of advancement back then.

message 3: by Marsha (last edited Nov 21, 2009 03:22PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Marsha I can tell you exactly why this book was set in 1991, in my opinion -- no cell phones. This plot absolutely wouldn't have worked if the characters had been able to contact each other at will.

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