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My Name Is Rose

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Rose is unsettled, curious, and bored. Life in a hippie commune is her parent's dream come true, not hers. She doesn't share their passion for living off the land, nor does she enjoy the isolation that is thrust upon her. When she convinces them to send her to public school in the nearby town, a new world opens up to her.

As she pursues her education, Rose chooses a different path, leaving her parents heartbroken at her insistence they are hiding something from her. She's convinced her father isn't the man her mother married.

Although she finds love far away from her roots and upbringing, her wounds only deepen as she keeps her family at arm’s length. What she loses during those years can only be retrieved with her understanding that “a Rose by any other name is still a Rose.”

Published March 15, 2019

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About the author

Alexa Kingaard

4 books152 followers
Alexa Kingaard was born in San Diego, CA and has lived most of her life in the area. She currently resides in Carlsbad and is the mother of a son and daughter who continue to be her biggest fans and cheerleaders.

Her debut novel, KEEP FOREVER, was inspired by her late ex-husband who battled the residual effects of the Vietnam War for decades after his return. The burden he brought home is shared by combat veterans of all conflicts, and her fictional account highlights the collateral damage encountered by family members and loved ones living with PTSD in their midst.

Her second novel, MY NAME IS ROSE, departs from her personal experiences and focuses on the collective memories of her generation. She loves writing about nostalgia and the human condition, the common denominator of our lives.

You can visit her online at

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 48 reviews
Profile Image for ♏ Gina Baratono☽.
724 reviews111 followers
February 1, 2020
Rose, the daughter of "Glory" and "River" (not their real names, but the ones they chose) was raised in a hippie commune in the 60's located in Washington State.

Glory and River had fled their city lives in San Francisco to the commune, and Rose was born soon thereafter. However, Rose was not as suited to that lifestyle as her parents were, and she begged to go to school away from home. Home was where they only shopped at 2nd hand stores. Home was where there were no benefits as far as Rose was concerned - especially when she got a taste of the "real" world where people wore clothes that were actually new, and spent time watching movies and television, and eating all sorts of things they hadn't grown themselves.

At college, Rose finds true love and they settle down to raise a family. However, there are nagging doubts in Rose's mind about many things that she realizes may be life-changing secrets from the past. She yearns to know the truth, even as those who know shut down when she asks.

Although there is a love store incorporated in this tale, it is more about family dynamics, secrets that inevitably come to light, forgiveness, and working through everything life can throw at you.
Profile Image for Jasmine.
436 reviews704 followers
March 26, 2019
***Actual Rating: 3.5/5 I’m-Still-Me Stars***

Life isn’t hard. People make it that way.

My Name is Rose is by far the most realistic story I’ve ever read. Told from the female main character, Rose’s, point-of-view, this book consists of the most confusing, unsolvable, yet thought-provoking issues we can easily relate to. The story starts with the outcome of Rose’s stubbornness persistent quest for a mystery about herself which she so desperately in need of unveiling. Smoothly, Rose genuinely and gradually reveals her inner thoughts as a young girl, a graceful lady, and later, a both-mature-and-immature grown-up.
I, on the other hand, stuck to my books, made a few friends who were outliers in the school social scene like me, grew three more inches, and lost twenty pounds. There were times when boys would stop in the hall and stare, but I always felt it was because I had something stuck in my teeth, or I was dragging around a piece of toilet paper stuck to my shoe. No one ever called me beautiful or singled me out for the girl they wanted to take anywhere, let alone to a school dance.

The reason I can fully relate to Rose’s experience is mainly because she’s not those popular hot chicks at school who always demand attention; instead, she is this slightly awkward girl-next-door who wants nothing but the peace of mind. Rose has had a crush on Andrew, her childhood classmate/friend, for as long as she remembers but she never dares dream about him or fantasize over him just because! When she gets older, Andrew comes back for her eventually. Although I don’t know why he turns around at the last minute, I actually AM relieved to see her happy with her true love…at least that’s what she tries to tell me.
What was a monumental moment to me seemed like a casual encounter, practiced and routine, to Andrew.

Everything Rose goes through is extremely unforgettable, from the butterfly-in-the-stomach feeling to that slump-in-your-throat bitterness, all of which will certainly leave you reflecting on your own life and pondering on things you’ve probably never thought about.
”You know what I mean, Rose. And those were different times. I’ve changed, River’s changed, you’ve changed. It happens. Life is lived in cycles. Just because you cling to one idea as a youngster, doesn’t mean you always have to think and feel the same way your entire existence. Every decade you live adds a new dimension and perspective. I had my turn being a mother and raising a child. You had your turn being a child. Now, you get to take your turn as a mother. Circle of life.”

Interestingly, as serious as this book sounds, Rose’s journey of becoming an adult doesn’t bore me at all. Undoubtedly, this book is pretty much about lessons of life, but I truly appreciate the author’s writing style. She manages to use the most uncomplicated vocabulary to deliver some of the most profound subjects. In particular, I absolutely love the metaphor of the circle of life; the concept seems pretty hard to understand yet when you come to think about it, living our lives in cycles makes perfect sense.
”And you have now succeeded in creating the same chasm between you and Glory (Rose’s mom) as she did with her own mother. You chose to risk all our lives, all our futures, to chase one hair-brained idea to the bitter end to satisfy you, no one else, just you. The rest of us will suffer so you can find an answer to some real or imagined hardship that was perpetrated upon you at birth. No matter what the truth is, River and Glory gave you an amazing life and loved you with all their hearts. Why can’t you just leave it at that, Rose? Why can’t that be enough?”

However, the main focus in this book isn’t about those morals I mentioned above. In my opinion, Rose’s story is more about her regrets than the precious lessons life has taught her. As we all know, she spends half of her life wondering about her bloodline from the day she was born and the stubbornness in her never wavers. She keeps looking for the absolute answer towards something that may or may not have a certain solution, which sadly turns out to be a disappointment for her.

Just because she figures something out in the end of the book doesn’t guarantee her a better, happier life afterwards. Besides, what’s the point when she makes so much sacrifice just to seek it? I admit I’m being super vague about the plot right now; I don’t want to spoil you with any possible detail. All I can say is that there IS still a great ending to Rose’s life journey and that sometimes letting go is probably the best choice anyone could’ve ever made throughout their lives.

All in all, My Name is Rose is a pretty realistic coming-of-age story and I’d RECOMMEND it to everyone. I’m sure all of you could gain something valuable in this book and hopefully, Rose’s character will further inspire you to be a lovelier person. Please hesitate no more and go pick up this book!

***Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours and the author for providing me with an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.***

{March 17, initial thought after finishing the book}

Huh, I'm taken aback by the honesty in the author's writing and the fact that someone just laid out pretty much every ordinary person's life in this book. From Rose's questioning perspective, we saw how confused she'd been ever since she was little. And that confusion grew stronger with each passing day throughout her adulthood. Reading this book was like seeing our life experiences as a bystander, making us think clearly from the outside. As abstract as the whole concept sounded, I could guarantee you a profound journey through Rose's narrative and that this book would leave you ponder on certain aspects of life.

*Not sure if this would be my full review but hopefully I'd still give you some ideas on what this book is about.*
Profile Image for Bobo's Book Bank.
549 reviews10 followers
April 9, 2019
MY NAME IS ROSE is a standalone women's fiction and is my very first read from author Alexa Kingaard.

Rose grew up in a non traditional little commune that consisted mostly of free spirited "hippies". Even as a young child, she knew she wanted more than what was offered at the commune. This is Rose's story.

I'll admit this isn't my normal genre. I usually prefer more romance in my books and although there IS a relationship in Rose's story, it's not what the plot revolves around. Having said that, the cover caught my eye and when I read the blurb, I knew I had to give this one a shot. Fundamentally, the story is written in a way that's easy to read and it's paced really well. But what I enjoyed more was being in Rose's mind and following her thinking. Not necessarily agreeing with her, mind you, but absolutely understanding her point of view. The story spans a huge portion of her life, maybe thirty years or so but no worries...it skips and jumps so it didn't drag at all for me. Rose was a strong minded woman. She knew what she wanted and grabbed onto it with both hands. She was an introvert but also curious, close to her parents but also kept them at a distance.

I won't give more of the plot away because although there's a few small surprises, the blurb is pretty straightforward. Again, this is ROSE'S STORY! I will say that I wavered between 4 and 5 stars because it was very hard to feel even a small connection to any other character besides Rose. I'm not sure if that was the author's intention or not? Either way, in the end I gave it 5 stars because it was simply an enjoyable experience from beginning to end! Told entirely from Rose's POV with a hopeful ending. I voluntarily read and reviewed this book.

27 reviews1 follower
February 21, 2020
My Name is Rose is a fantastic story about going back to your roots. As Rose grows up on a commune she begins to reject all the things her parent's lifestyle stands for. As soon as she is able, she moves away to go to university to pursue a degree in Interior Design, about as far away as possible from her commune upbringing. As time marches on she gets married, has children and has an intense falling out with her parents. Ten years after the fact, she returns to the commune to reconcile and make peace, only to find her mother ailing. After her mother's death the 2008 recession hits and their lives are turned upside down and Rose has made the choice to go back to her roots.

This book is fantastically written. You feel utterly connected to Rose and the twists and turns her life takes. The book has the opportunity to be cheesy but it never falls into the cliche. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel and will absolutely read it again.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author via Voracious Readers Only.
46 reviews1 follower
August 25, 2020
I got a free copy of this book via Voracious Readers Only in exchange for an honest review.

What I liked:
- The writing was great
- The characters were likeable and dimensional

What I didn't like:
- Sometimes the timeline was a little confusing
- The pacing was very slow at times
833 reviews4 followers
December 4, 2019
It's not an accident that the main character's name in this novel is Rose. The famous Shakespeare quote , "A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet" could be the byline for this book. Rose has never felt a part of her family. She has never belonged with them on the commune where she was born and raised and she takes us on her journey to find her real self.

This book surprised me because when I first started reading it I thought it was going to be about a stereotypical girl trying to escape the confinement of a commune. However, the author's descriptive prose not only brings to life the beauty and tranquility of the landscape of the commune but details the loving and safe environment there that surrounds Rose.

Rose fulfills her wish and leaves home for college hoping to never look back on her communal life. She leads what most would call a normal life. She marries, has kids, two cars and a suburban home. It's the American dream. So why does she still feel unfulfilled and keeps looking back to her life on the commune for answers?

At the beginning of the book I felt it was slow moving and I found teenage Rose annoyingly whiny. I am so glad I kept reading this book. The last two thirds were surprisingly informative, realistic and emotionally moving for me.

Rose is desperate to uncover secrets surrounding her family like why her parents started the commune , why her mother does not speak to or mention her own mother and why are her parents so close to the other couple who started the commune with them? The truth might set Rose free but at what cost to herself and her family.

One of the things I appreciated was that the author was realistic about the era the story takes place in. It's the 1980s when Rose reaches adulthood and like most higher middle class families in the 1980s hers benefits from the greed of bankers and the rising stock market. They also deal with the fallout of this greed.

I recommend this book because the writer was able to keep me guessing as to what direction Rose's life was taking and where she would eventually end up. I was happily surprised by the end and was grateful for being on this ride with Rose. I learned sometimes even when we get the answer we want it doesn't mean we don't pay a price for it.

I received a free copy of this book from Voracious Readers Only for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for ☕Brenda Loves Books☕.
342 reviews42 followers
January 1, 2020
Where to start with all the emotions this wonderful book conjures up in me.
I remember being a teen, and thinking how much better things would be when I was 18.
In this book Rose thinks leaving her lifelong home will bring her happiness.
In many ways it does, but in the end like so many of us we come full circle, and realize that home is exactly what we needed.
Profile Image for Cranky - The Book Curmudgeon.
2,087 reviews149 followers
March 28, 2019
4 Cranky Stars

Rose was raised in a hippie commune which had been started by her mother, father and their best friends. Glory, River, Uncle Jacob and Aunt Fern, these were names they had chosen for themselves to be more part of Mother Nature. They lived off the land and had acres of fruit trees, bushes and vegetable gardens. They grew everything that the whole commune needed as more people joined in their way of life, with their animals as well. That which was left over they sold at a road side stall and they canned the fruit. They bargained for everything they needed furniture for example and went to the thrift shop for needed clothing.

Rose and her cousin Destiny had the choice to go to the local school, which they both opted for. Years started going by and when Andrew, Jacob's nephew came to stay for a while Rose fell head-over-heels in love with him, but he never noticed her. Being 2 years older he was already at high school where he met a girl and broke Rose's heart without even knowing it. It was Rose that wanted out of the commune way of life and even though Destiny enjoyed her school life and the social life that went with it, when she finished school realised that she had no education to speak of to take her any further whereas Rose had studied hard and got a scholarship to college. Destiny was the pretty one that took care of her looks, but Rose didn't blossom until she went to college. Her roommate helped style her hair and shopped for suitable clothes. Her first social night out and she met up with Andrew again, who took notice of how beautiful she really was. They became an item that developed over the years. Rose's curious mind could not let go that she thought there were secrets being held within the family.

This book then turns into her search for the truth...…..but is it what she wanted and what price did she have to pay for it?
1 review
April 14, 2019
My Name is Rose is new novel by Alexa Kingaard. The narrative follows a family over several generations of women, ending with Rose. Rose is curious about her mother and grandmother but both are reluctant to divulge their secrets to her or each other. Each generation faced its own challenges and issues. Unfortunately, Rose’s mother and grandmother have dealt with these challenges by closing themselves off from their families. Rose works to uncover these secrets to bring these strong women together. The novel shows how frayed family ties can lead to estrangement. Rewarding interactions with loved ones are squandered and family history is lost when reconciliation is postponed too long.
3 reviews
January 26, 2020
This book is an easy, enjoyable read. However, I found some of it a little too predictable. For instance, one hint near the beginning is a little too obvious. Some parts also seemed rather unrealistic, especially the sudden changes which some of the characters undergo, a little too abrupt ( e.g. Rose's parents). As a writer myself, I felt there was, in some parts of the story, too much tell and not enough show.
Rose is an engaging character although I wished she would be more forceful in her attempts to learn the details about her past that bother her so much.
But if you're looking for a nice, easy story with a female character you can relate to, this might be a good fit for you.
I received this book through Voracious Readers, os I could read and review it.
Profile Image for Energy (Rae's Reading).
1,447 reviews35 followers
March 24, 2019
My name is Rose tells the story of a woman who grew up on a commune to leave and try to find a better life for herself. Rose goes back and forth through history telling of her past with her family and her friendships, to the present in trying to raise a family with an adoring husband.

She always knew she was different, and when her mother finally makes peace with her grandmother, she's able to reconnect that relationship. While at her house, she discovers something shocking in a picture. For Rose, she cannot find her place in this world until she knows who she is and how she fits in with her family.

This was a good read, it was detailed and touching. I felt bad for Rose when she got cut off from everyone because of her curiosity, and I did feel like her mother wildly overreacted. I just couldn't get on board with such an outlandish reason to cut your child out of your life like that. Aside from that, Kingaard did a great job telling Rose's story.
Profile Image for Meara Fisher.
36 reviews1 follower
March 3, 2020
Although this book is not in my usual genre by a long shot, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I struggled to put it down, dying to know the answer to Rose’s questions. My guess was a little darker than the actual answer, but either way, it was a fascinating read. There were a few situations where I felt the characters’ reactions weren’t realistic. I would recommend this book to anyone because I liked it and it is nowhere near my favorite genre. 
177 reviews
July 10, 2020
I received a copy of this book from the author via Voracious Readers only. This is a gentle story of how love between parents and children is always present, no matter the trials and tribulations you all go through in life. It was interesting to read about a way of life so different from the busy and noisy life many of us experience and how circumstances can lead you back to a life that was once seen as undesirable. Worth a read, but not fast paced, and not the type of book I usually read, but an eye opener into how other people live their lives
Profile Image for Andrea Thompson.
718 reviews6 followers
March 26, 2019
This was truly everything I hoped it would be. It is such an interesting perspective to read about a life from. It's got it all - great language, fantastic life-retelling and of course, family secrets.
Rose is a relatable, lovable character. The way she recounts her life, her experiences, her relationships was just so articulate and dead on.
This story is a true coming-of-age, figuring out who you really are kind of story. Highly recommend if this kind of storytelling appeals to you! One of the best books I have read this year.
Profile Image for Lori Oliver-Tierney.
Author 1 book19 followers
March 31, 2019
I really loved the way this book was written. It brought to light the fact that our true identity is the one we make for ourselves and believe in our heart. This was a really enjoyable read and I looked forward to seeing where Rose would end up in her journey. I will be buying other books by this author.
Profile Image for Lois Letchford.
Author 1 book34 followers
October 29, 2019
My Name is Rose was enjoyable and easy to read.
The first sentence drew me in and engaged me in the story. I loved the secret, it's unveiling, and felt part of the hippy community. The book also gives an interesting take on generational attitudes and changes in the modern world.
On completion of the book, however, I began to think this could have been a great book if several critical scenarios were used to explore conflicts rather than opting for a simple solution.
Profile Image for R..
36 reviews1 follower
May 1, 2020
*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the author via Voracious Readers Only*

What a heartwarming story. I loved everything about it.

The characters are all well written and likeable in their own ways. And a sweet, endearing story about family and finding your own path while remembering where you come from.

A great perspective on how life comes full circle.
6 reviews
October 22, 2019
I enjoyed this book a lot. It was a little hard to get into because it jumps around in time a bit in the beginning without any clear indication of how many years later it is until your a page into the chapter. However that's my ONLY complaint about it. Once you get past that it's a really good read. It's a great story that gives you a clear view into another way of living, life in a commune. The author also touches on some themes that I think are relevant to most people about the path our lives tend to follow, at least I can relate to them very well as I get older.
Profile Image for BookishMunchkin.
144 reviews2 followers
February 6, 2020
Pretty decent read about a woman’s journey finding out who she is and where she comes from. I liked the setting and seeing her grow up. The book was a bit boring at times and rushed in others, but overall was a good read. 2.75 stars rounded up to 3.
Profile Image for Samantha.
189 reviews8 followers
May 8, 2020
A really enjoyable read and a story of growth and discovery.
Follow Rose as she goes through her life and yearns to learn the secrets she knows are being hidden by her mother 'Glory'.
Glory and River move to the country and start a commune with friends not long after turning 18. This story is told from the perspective of Rose and her life which begins on the commune with her best friend Destiny.
The easy freedom and natural living are a life enjoyed by the adults, but Rose holds a desire to leave the commune and live the city life.
Very peaceful ending to the story. I enjoyed reading how Rose comes full circle in her life and learns to enjoy the little things.
Profile Image for Jackie Welcel.
203 reviews4 followers
October 21, 2020
This book went back and forth from the 70's to Rose's childhood living in a "hippie" compound to today where Rose is married with 2 children. The flashbacks to the 70's were great since I am about the same age as her parents. I had a hard time believing a huge question she carried with her would cause a falling out for so many years. It does follow Rose to college, her falling in love, having children, being pushed away from her family, getting close to her grandmother she never really knew and coming back full circle.
Profile Image for Marlena.
65 reviews
January 15, 2020
I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading this book. I love the way Would I like Rose's character or not? I really like how Alexa Kingaard made Rose flawed and real. She wasn't really a victim or a hero. She was an everyday person with hopes, dreams, and an unusual family. I completely understand the struggles she had, the mistakes she made, and wanting to be loved. This was an enjoyable book to read.
January 29, 2020
Since joining Voracious Readers I have been able to read a few decent books complimentary and this one was good. A convoluted tail that comes around to the beginning in an interesting and nice way . I thoroughly enjoyed this one .
Profile Image for Holly Kammier.
Author 5 books94 followers
February 13, 2019
This is such beautiful, moving story. As a daughter of hippies, My Name Is Rose, resonated even deeper. Kingaard nailed the authenticity in this one. I highly recommend.
68 reviews1 follower
January 9, 2020
Having received a complementary copy of this novel from the author, through Voracious Readers Only, I was surprised by the depth of the writing. While still being easy to read this novel tell a tale of self discovery and the often forgotten values of a simple lifestyle as Rose rebels against her communal upbringing and patents hippy lifestyle to embrace the modern materialistic life as she tries to discover who she is by focusing on her parents and their mistakes rather than on looking inwards.
A brilliant book I couldn't put down. It kept me engaged from the first page to the last.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
470 reviews17 followers
November 13, 2019
This was an enjoyable read. It's a lovely, poignant story of a woman's quest for a purposeful life. It follows Rose from her childhood in a commune to her mid-thirties as she navigates both the life her parents chose for her and the life she chooses for herself.

The novel was on the short side. I think that the story could have been improved with some fleshing out of certain elements. I found it was difficult, until mid to late in the novel, to ascertain when events were taking place, so some additional context (world events, pop culture/technological references, etc) would have been helpful. Furthermore, I think more details about the commune would also have been interesting - what its goals and philosophies are, more about the communal lifestyle (it seemed like it was really a collective of farmers who lived largely separately as neighbours but shared in labour and divided the harvest, rather than where living arrangements are shared and all meals are taken together), additional information about other players in commune life, how Rose is exposed to some of her ideas, etc.

The character development is well-executed. The story is narrated from Rose's perspective, so she remains the most vivid character. She also comes across as an introvert. Unfortunately, the richness of her inner world didn't always translate well to me. (I still think this would translate well to a visual representation, with the text of the novel being the voiceover, a la "Call the Midwife"). Oddly, I found there was a distancing effect - none of the events felt immediate or emotionally evocative (until the end of the novel). First-person narrated novels do make it very difficult to display multi-faceted characters other than the narrator, but I think the author did a very good job with certain among the other characters. I wish the same attention had been provided to some others, as they read a little hollow to me for people who were among the closest to Rose.

I found that some of Rose's reactions really stretched my credulity. For someone who, early in her life, prided herself on her ambition and who came across as a bit feisty, that seemed to be turned on its ear in her adult behaviour. (There is often a disconnect between how we see ourselves and how others see us - if this was intentional, it was well-done, but I remain unconvinced that this was a conscious choice on the part of the author). This seemed most obvious in matters of Rose's career and adult friendships (of which Rose seems to have none - this seems odd to me).

I think the strongest and most poignant element for me was Rose's relationship with her mother. (It makes me want to call my own mother). Rose's attitude and understanding of her mother shifts over time (as happens to all of us, I think, given that mother-daughter relationships are often fraught) and the shifts seemed very organic to Rose's growth and state of mind. This was portrayed very well, although I did feel that there was room for more to be shown - particularly when it came to Rose's early years. (I'm still not clear, exactly, on the genesis of Rose's obsession - I didn't feel there was a real explanation of why this came to dominate her mind, although the origin of the idea itself was explained).

There were some small errors in the novel. The one that bothered me was the use of singular possessive (parent's) instead of plural possessive (parents'). This was a repetitive, consistent error throughout the novel. (I don't think I saw it used correctly at all).

So, yes, I really enjoyed reading this novel - I think a little more in the development of setting (especially time period) and character, as well as greater attention to editing would have made this a 5-star book for me. Even so, there were tears at the end, so there was a definite emotional impact and I'm interested in reading more from this author.

I received a copy of this novel through Voracious Readers Only.
July 2, 2020
A quiet, thoughtful novel! Beautifully wrought! A breath of fresh air in an oversensationalized, technologically driven world. Makes for quiet pondering and introspection. I recommend several pots of tea and this lovely novel for self perspective!
Profile Image for Isabelle | Nine Tale Vixen.
2,032 reviews113 followers
April 6, 2019
I received a review copy of this book through Xpresso Book Tours for the blog tour. This does not affect my rating or opinions.

I was intrigued by the opening, since I'm a fan of start at the end and rewind to see how we got here, but unfortunately it was downhill from there.

Rose just irritated me with her constant judgment of everyone else around her: her parents' decision to leave their well-off upbringings to help found a hippie commune, her much prettier "cousin"/best friend Destiny (you know the type — "If I didn't love her like a sister, I would hate her because her life is so easy because she's so beautiful [and mine isn't because I'm not]"), and the other girls she encounters at school. She also spends a lot of time bemoaning her hand-me-downs from Goodwill, and (later on) the unfair choice between having a cell phone and computer and Internet or "moving into a cave ... or a hippie commune" because those are apparently the only options. Throughout the book, her focus is almost exclusively focused on creating a future with Andrew and confirming the identity of her biological father; while it's her prerogative, I found it hard to relate or sympathize because ultimately she doesn't seem to do much to achieve either — she just thinks about them a lot.

I also found the writing itself awkward. The dialogue was really stilted, working to further the plot rather than developing the characters and their relationships; there was little in the way of concrete plot, and the scenes/snippets that were detailed didn't really interest me. The ending was also disappointing; without going into spoilers, I felt that it undermined all the buildup — it wasn't bad in and of itself, just really abrupt. was kind of nice, but also felt arbitrary and appended on to the rest of the narrative.

So all in all, this really wasn't for me. But if you want a comfortable, predictable read with lots of family dynamics and domestic scenes, this might be one for you.
Profile Image for Sherrill Joseph.
Author 6 books55 followers
December 19, 2019
Alexa Kingaard has written an intricately crafted, compelling novel that will keep the reader turning pages. One theme is to be careful what you wish for as events, fortunes, and misfortunes of life double back upon our main character Rose. These cause her to rethink many of her earliest ideas.

The story follows the life of Rose, who grows up in a hippy commune in Washington State. Her parents, “Glory” and “River,” had chosen their names and lifestyle, dropping out of mainstream life in the 1970s. Despite a simple pastoral existence with cozy Sunday dinners featuring homegrown produce, commune neighbors, “Aunt” Fern, “Uncle” Jacob, and Mom’s delicious homemade biscuits, Rose is bored. She has had enough of wearing clothes from second-hand stores. She longs to escape to the city and become acquainted with the big world, fresh ideas, and some materialistic aspects of life.

Rose begins her quest early by convincing her parents to let her and commune cousin Destiny go to the local public school. They are joined by Destiny’s visiting cousin, Andrew. It doesn’t take long for Rose to develop a crush on Andrew, who is a bit older than the two girls. Unfortunately, her love is unrequited. Later, Rose attends college at the University of San Francisco—as it turns out, her mother’s alma mater. She meets the love of her life at a beach bonfire, who reconnects Rose—for better and for worse—to the past she is trying to escape.

One day while visiting her maternal grandmother in San Francisco, she sees in an old photo album a picture taken at her mother’s eighteenth birthday. An image in the picture reignited suspicions Rose has kept to herself for years about her relationship to close family members.

Rose spends her middle years in mainstream society as a wife, mother, interior designer, and seeker of the truth about the family “secret.” Will she find the answers she thinks she needs to quell her anxieties? If she does, what will she do with the information? What can she learn about her attitudes towards her parents and their lifestyle? Can commune living have benefits she never realized as a child?

I recommend My Name is Rose to readers who like historical fiction with a bit of romance and a twist of mystery. And if you’ve ever wondered what to do with an important secret, this is the book for you.
Profile Image for Ramcy Diek.
Author 5 books161 followers
January 9, 2020
What a sweet read. I finished it in one day.
Rose's parents left their lives in San Fransisco behind to start a commune in Washington State. Soon after, Rose is born. As she grows older, she finds out the life her parents chose is not for her.
Everyone has a reason to leave home. Rose wants to find out what her parents reason was.
Wanting to find out the truth keeps you glued to the pages.
I highly recommend My Name is Rose. It's an easy everyone can enjoy.
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