Alex at Raiding Bookshelves's Reviews > The Wedding Gift

The Wedding Gift by Kathleen McKenna
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's review
Jan 07, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: arc, reviewed, 2012-books, imm, reviewed-2012, netgalley

The Wedding Gift is a thrilling murder mystery turned ghost story by Kathleen McKenna. Southern belle Leanne Worthier is the girl everyone in Dalton, Oklahoma wants to be. George Willets Jr. is the heir to the Willet petroleum business. So when the two hook up and Leanne gets knocked up, no one is surprised to be invited to the wedding of the year.
Unfortunately, Mummy Willets doesn't approve of the pretty new Mrs Willets and the newly wed couple are sent to live in the Willet ancestral home, where George's uncle Roger and his five children were brutually murdered. Leanne's brother died sneaking in there almost twenty years before she moves in, and no one is happy to see her heading through those doors.

What I Liked: This is definitely a ghost story, Robina Willets is twelve kinds of creepy and she definitely has a story that needs to be told. Leanne is a genuine southern belle with a heart of gold...or is that made of gold? She might be a greedy little snob, but when it comes to the people she loves Leanne is made of strong stuff.
Jessie was probably the best character in the book. She's the only one who can be sassy, emotional and terrified out of her brains without seeming out of character.
The twist was pretty good, though I found it a mite predictable. However, the way McKenna described Roger's degeneration through the diaries was superb.

What I Didn't Like: Leanne annoyed the bejeevies out of me. Her selfishness, her language and her outlook on life seemed so out of place with how I remember being 18, and with anyone I know. She was a sweet character and I genuinely liked her in the end but her language annoyed me.
The newspaper articles were awful! As a journalism student I take offence at the way they were written. We had a newsworthy triangle where the important things go first, and the meaningless rubbish (the point of the triangle) is thrown in on the bottom where it can be edited out. The language used and the quotes picked didn't suit the tone of the stories. It's probably nitpicking, especially since I sit and watch the news picking out faults, but it's the kind of thing that bugs me.

Unfortunately, because so many things annoyed me about the writing, I only gave it two stars. It was a decent ghost story but a lot of the extraneous stuff distracted me from what I wanted: a thrilling ghost story.

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