Thursday, 14 July 2011

The Other Twin



Author: Katherine Stone
Pages: 297
Genre: Modern Fiction
First Published: 2003
First Line: "You're not going to marry her!"

Synopsis: On a rainy night Claire Forrester, her beloved husband and in-laws are in a car accident that leaves Clarie's husband and parents dead and Claire in early labour.

Thirty years later, Claire's daughter Paige is a talented doctor who goes above and beyond to help her cancer patients to the detriment of her personal life. Gwen St James, a make-up artist at a local TV station, is asked by Claire to come into the hospital to make over one of her patients who has been ravaged by cancer. Paige and Gwen both feel a connection between them and become close friends quickly. Meanwhile, Claire starts to have flashbacks to the night of the accident and can't quite help feeling that she's about to unlock some dark family secrets that her subconscious has kept from her for the past 30 years.

My Thoughts: This was one of those books that I picked up merely based on a quick glance of the book cover. I was in the library looking for a book to take to the beach. I wanted a Sydney Sheldon-type read filled with delicious deception, back-stabbing and loads of twists ... and the occasional Alexis Carrington-esque cat fight wouldn't go unappreciated either. In other words, I wanted a perfect beach read.

Sadly, this book just didn't measure up. I finished it but barely. The overall storyline that was described on the book jacket sounded intriguing but the writing just didn't cut it for me.

First of all, there were quite a few characters but I never felt like I got to know any of them even though, throughout the book, the author continually spoon fed the reader characters' inner thoughts. A character would be speaking but, at the same time, their inner thoughts were printed in italics. Not needed if the writing was better. Kind of like ....

"Hi Paige! I can't believe I just bumped into you here!" I hope she doesn't think I've been waiting around for her!.

That kind of thing. I don't need to be spoon fed character's thoughts. It just comes off as annoying.

There was also the added confusion about who was who. I had a hard time remembering which stunningly handsome man went with which utterly gorgeous woman. Everyone was just so darn pretty that no one really stood out and that made my gag reflex start to tingle just a bit. The author couldn't throw in an average gal who may wear Spanx and perhaps a guy without a great tan, a cleft or a dimple??

The people and the storylines in this book worked out too perfectly for me and felt contrived and utterly unbelievable. First of all, the happenstance meeting of several of the characters that then turned into long-lost relationships is too out there to be plausible. There's fate and then there's 'Oh pullleeeze!".

There were also a plethora of subplots going on (what is with me picking books lately with oodles of superfluous subplots?!?) which just made the overall storyline feel too convoluted and I ended up not really caring about any storyline. Add to the fact that there was an overabundance of issues being dealt with and it got really drawn-out and complicated when it didn't have to be. For example, this book deals with postpartum depression, kidney disease, organ donors, neglect/child abuse .... Too much goin' on!!

The final straw (which happened right at the end --- SPOILER ALERT!!)
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is when both twins get pregnant and announce their pregnancies to their mother at the same time. Oh ... come ... on!! Really!?! That little gem felt like something out of a Sweet Valley High book. Don't get me wrong, I loved Sweet Valley High .... when I was 12 years old. I'm much too jaded now to believe that all these connections and revelations 'just happen'.

This was an intriguing storyline but, unfortunately, was poorly executed. I felt totally let down and a little ticked that the book wasn't nearly as good as the write up on the book jacket made it out to be

My Rating: 1.5/5 stars

1 comment:

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