Friday, 18 January 2013

The Rose Petal Beach

   Don't you just hate it when you read a book and you like absolutely none of the characters and you are unable to connect with them? That's exactly how I felt reading Dorothy Koomson's 'The Rose Petal Beach'. I can't even summarise what the book is about as I personally felt that the story was 'meh' in parts so here is the book's actual blurb from Koomson's own website:

"Who would you hurt in the name of love? Tamia Challey is horrified when her husband, Scott, is accused of a terrible crime – but when she discovers who his accuser is, everything goes into free-fall. Scared and confused, Tamia is forced to choose who she instinctively believes. But her choice has dire consequences for all concerned, especially when matters take a tragic turn . . . "

How ambiguous is that? I know a blurb isn't supposed to give away spoilers but come on...

  Anyway, the main reason why I didn't really like The Rose Petal Beach was because the multiple narrative style really bugged me. I'm not against multiple narrators by the way. I'm a fan of the technique when it is used successfully, for example in Nicholas Sparks' 'The Last Song'. With this novel, I felt that the technique could have been used better and reading some of the characters' inner monologues (Beatrix) didn't help my growing annoyance with them. I've noticed that I tend to find characters more irritating when I don't agree with their choices and also when I find their choices totally ludicrous and unbelievable. Unfortunately, this was the case with The Rose Petal Beach. Again, I don't want to give away too much on the book's plot but I scoffed many a time in incredulity. There is just too much going on.

  In addition, I did not particularly like the way that Koomson presented flashbacks and past events. Instead of introducing a flashback with 'seventeen years ago' or 'not very long ago', I think Koomson could have given actual years and dates for events to stop the reader and people like myself from having to strain to do the mental maths to work out the novel's time frame. Having to do this made me lose the novel's plot at times which further annoyed me. I still don't know what year the novel is set in! Furthermore, I personally believe that colloquialisms in books are a massive NO-NO unless they are used correctly and I am still cringing from the fails that I read in The Rose Petal Beach. 

  For me, the only good part in the book was the ending for two reasons; 1) it was such a massive twist that I did not see coming at all and 2) I was glad to finally finish the book and never have to read it again. I also liked the book's beautiful cover but that deceives you into thinking that the book itself will be as good and it is sadly not. 

  All the opinions expressed here are my own and if you completely disagree and think the complete opposite to all my aforementioned points, well, to each his own. 

Rating 2.5/5 **

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