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Preview — Desert Flowers by Paul Pen
Rose and Elmer have created an idyllic sanctuary for themselves and their five daughters in Mexico’s Baja California desert. Out there in the middle of nowhere, blissfully cut off from the burdens of modern society, they’re free to raise their beautiful family…and preserve its secret.
And they’re never giving it up.
Then a young hiker named Rick comes looking for a place to...more
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“People are almost never what they seem.”
In this case, sadly the book wasn’t quite what it seemed either. Per the placeholder “review” below, you can see proof of why it is important to have good titles, pretty covers and an eye-catching synopsis in order to hook readers. Especially a reader like me who doesn’t even bother reading a whole blurb before hitting the request or one-click buttons or running straight to the nearest cash ...more
I remember reading Light of the Fireflies, a novel by the same author. There was something so special about the book. It was creepy, and full of so many wrong-feeling parts ... ideas, ones which I knew I should detest, yet was led to experience in totally unexpected ways. In a most twisted sense, a completely unexpected voice, it shouted loudly about family. And love. And the things we as family members do to, and for one another.
Similarly, Desert Flowers was a deligh ...more
After reading this book I was left with an emotional ache, one that was tingled with sadness and happiness that clashed together, a definite sign that this book is an absorbing and addictive general fiction novel which deserves five stars and more.
After getting halfway through the book, I found it near impossible to put down and only would put it down as tiredness overtook me. I just ha ...more
Rose and Elmer live in the middle of the Mexican desert along with their four daughters. They have no neighbors and only occasionally Elmer will take one of the two older daughters with him into town to buy supplies. The children have no playmates except each other.
One afternoon a young man, Rick, comes along on foot claiming to be a hiker and ends up with an invite to stay for dinner. Rick soon discovers this family has secrets and Rose and Elmer dis ...more
From the edge of my sit to the verge of tears, Paul Pen took me from the extraordinary but also petrifying story of a flower bed in the middle of the desert. An incredible story of anti-heroes who live happy lives in the aridness of their actions and sins. Written to be read without stopping, Pen adventures in a foreign and unknown land of uncertainty dyed with the shades of ...more
'Dessert Flowers' is about a close knit family living in isolation. They live a relatively happy life together until a stranger wanders onto their property, bringing with him the threat of losing all that they hold dear.
This was a solid read from beginning to end. There we're some surprises along the way a ...more
I've never read anything by Mr. Pen before so I had an open mind. And then I started reading.
Elmer and Rose live an isolated existence in Mexico with their (5) daughters.
When Rick, a solitary traveler, happens upon their homestead looking for food and water, they decide to offer hospitality and the comforts of a home cooked meal.
Until it turns out Rick isn't a traveler, he has a secret and Elmer and Rose hide many horrible sec ...more
The story starts out with the day to day life of Rose and Elmer and their four daughters all named after flowers. They seem to be a normal family other than the fact they live in the middle of nowhere.
When a stranger happens upon their land one day, they treat him with kindness and allow him to spend the night. His ever increasing questions, however, have them considering their choice. Was it a mistake to let the stranger into their household?
Oh yeah, th ...more
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC.
I really loved the setting of the story and the author's writing, what didn't convince me was the plot. It was weak in my opinion, even if the epilogue gave it some sense.
It's a shame because I was loving so much the first half but I wanted something more frome the story and it was too depressing. Only the epilogue saved it all but that wasn't enough for the five stars I was hoping to give from the firsts chapters!
Unexpected situations and ending. Despicable characters that
you almost understand. Gruesome parts, , but overall a book that
makes you wonder what would you have done if you would have
been in their shoes! Not an American style finale!
But I didn't.
Reviews are fickle, funny things. Lord knows, I've written a fair few of them and some of them are definitely not flattering. (A lot of them. What can I say, I was born to be a critic, liebling!) But this is one time where reviews steered me wrong.
Pros: this book is beautifully w ...more
The plot was interesting, but not exactly overwhelming. However, I absolutely LOVED the writing, which totally made up for every flaw I found, like the totally ridiculous and unbelievable older sister that really got on my nerves or some non-credible plot twists that seemed too constructed.
The characters and setting reminded me of Fireflies and the book throughout followed his previous writing style, which was the main factors that made me a huge fan of his work.
The plot twist was a real shock and I really enjoy the way the author makes situations that do actually happen but don't get get talked about, into the main aspect of his books.
I was slightly let down by th ...more
This is a haunting read that will stay with you long after you read it. The desert descriptions are vivid and beautiful, yet the book reads as a page-turner. I found it hard to put down and would get frustrated when I had to stop reading for the night. I w ...more
I can't help but be impressed by the level of crazy this author spins.
My God. The art of story telling. Superb.
You have to read it to find out. It's written so well. The twists and the turns. Wow. This time he really took me by surprise. Never would have guessed.
Great book. Great plot. Super suspenseful !!
What I really want to say about this book would be considered a spoiler. So, I'll put END here shortly, hit Enter a zillion or so times, and then you can scroll down and see the SPOILER if you want to.
I'm giving this three stars trending upward and definitely want to read other things Mr Pen has written. Was happy this was a Prime selection.
I am quickly becoming a huge fan of Paul Pen. He has an individual but quite simple style of writing which really works for me. He has a very interesting way of creating close familial bonds between his characters, particularly from the viewpoint of children and vulnerable characters. Although there is no particular danger or anything really happening i ...more
This book was very good. I had read The Light of the Fireflies previously and loved it. I was so happy to have won this book, I couldn't wait to read it. It was just as good, if not better, than the first novel. I love the way the author writes, you feel as if you are right there with the characters. This book is about a family who live out in the desert in Mexico. The parents have four daughters, all named after flowers. I literally did not want to stop r ...more
The author’s character and scene development is mesmerizing. The plot unusual and riveting. It is fast moving, disturbing and thought provoking. It is a book that stays with you while you seek out others who have read it in order to discuss its twists, turns and possible future ramifications for t ...more