Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A Simple Thing

Author: Kathleen McCleary
Goodreads Rating: 4.30
My Rating: 3.25
Pages: 297
Reviewed by: Nicole

I got this book from HarperCollins as part of the blog tour hosted by TLC Blog Tours.

Goodreads Synopses:

When Susannah Delaney discovers her young son is being bullied and her adolescent daughter is spinning out of control, she moves them to remote, rustic Sounder Island to live for a year. A simple island existence--with no computers or electricity and only a one-room schoolhouse--is just what her over scheduled East Coast kids need to learn what's really important in life. But the move threatens her marriage to the man she's loved since childhood, and her very sense of self.

For Betty Pavalak, who moved to Sounder to save her own troubled marriage, the island has been a haven for fifty years. But Betty also knows the guilt of living with choices made long ago and actions that cannot be undone. The unlikely friendship between Susannah and Betty ignites a journey of self-discovery for both women and brings them both home to what they love most. "A Simple Thing" moves beyond friendship, children, and marriages to look deeply into what it means to love and forgive--yourself.

I didn't hate this book, but there were parts of this book that made me want to pull out my hair. Those things of course, were things that were supposed to get a reaction out of a person, and so it was only fitting that I did have these reactions. For starters I wanted to kill Katie, the insolent teenager, through the entire book, at least until she became a real person at the end and not a spiteful child.

I felt for Susannah as she tried to protect her children, but her husband Mark was right when he said that she was running away and not just trying to protect her children. That actually really frustrated me about Susannah, because it was understandable that she had a lot of emotional baggage that got explained later in the book, but that is no reason to take your children out of school and move to another part of the country.

I enjoyed Betty's story, sad as it was, it showed that every situation is what you make of it. I totally hated her husband, but she made it work being on the island. I also loved learning about how she made it to the island. There didn't seem to be very much of a relationship between Betty and Susannah except for a few conversations, but I guess thats all it takes?

I guess back to why Katie made me so mad. Besides being a 14 year old, and just hating everyone, she was just an awful person, yes she was remorseful, but only when she seemed to get caught. The way that she spoke to her mother too, I mean, I know I wasn't a great teenager, but she was insufferable. I would probably have CPS called on me because I would hit my child if they called me a bitch (or I would be locked in my room crying about how much of a failure of a parent I was and how my kid hates me)(also, I know I'm a terrible person for saying that, but sometimes teenagers, myself included, need some sense knocked into them), either way, bad things.

I felt like the ending was a little bit abrupt, like McCleary realized she found a great ending, but then left a few things unresolved, so she jammed them in. It was hard not to feel that way when the rest of the book was very carefully constructed. Overall, it was a good book, it evoked a lot of strong emotions, but those emotions (which could go either way) didn't lead me to love the book like a lot of people did. It was well written, so go and enter my giveaway!

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