December 1, 2011

The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards

I wonder if other people who read a lot of books (and a lot of book blogs) feel this way too, but when I hear a bunch of terrible things about a book, I feel a little relieved. One less book to try and squeeze onto my already way-too-long list of things to read.

And if I read a book that I don't care for, I am unlikely to read anything else by that author.

After reading (and by "reading," I really mean "slogging") The Memory Keeper's Daughter a couple of years ago and being distinctly unimpressed, I had no desire to read anything by Kim Edwards again.

But then, when The Lake of Dreams showed up as an option for the BlogHer Book Club and the back sounded like it could be quite excellent, I decided to take a chance on it.

And I am so so glad I did. I enjoyed this book more than any adult book I've read since What Alice Forgot (I liked What Alice Forgot more, though, so if you only have time for ONE book, you should choose that one instead).

The Lake of Dreams has many of the same elements of The Memory Keeper's Daughter - family secrets, forgotten relatives, etc - but the way this one came together worked so much better for me. I found the characters richer and more likeable.

I loved watching the family mysteries slowly unfold, the backdrop of history, and the romance. The narrative follows Lucy, who has spent the decade since her father's somewhat mysterious death roaming the globe. After her mother has a minor accident, she comes home to visit and discovers some hidden documents in the house which leads her to discover an ancestor who has been forgotten for generations. I loved seeing the clues come together while Lucy also tries to decide between her long-time boyfriend and her now-back-in-town high school boyfriend. It's really just a lovely, well-written, engrossing book.

Now I'm wondering what other authors I've mistakenly written off after one lousy book . . .


I read this book for the BlogHer Book Club and you can read other reviews and discussions at BlogHer. I am paid for my participation in the BlogHer Book Club, but I choose which books to read and my reviews are strictly my own opinions. If I think a book is terrible, I'll say so. If I rave about a book, it's because it's one I'd give to Kayla or my mom.

5 comments:

  1. Oooh! I'm so glad you posted about this, because I too have written off poor Ms. Edwards because of Memory Keeper. (There were good-ISH parts of that book... But overall, MEH.)

    Adding this to my Goodreads now...

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  2. One of the things I'm finding fascinating about reading reviews of this book is that people who loved The Memory Keeper's Daughter tend not like it and vice versa. Fascinating.

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  3. I hated The Memory Keepers Daughter so much that i couldent force myself to read the rest of it. This one sounds more like one i might enjoy, i'll add it to my ever growing list.

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  4. My dad has The Memory Keeper's Daughter and I must have picked it up half a dozen times, but I could never get myself to read it. Good to know that if he buys this one, I can borrow it without qualms.

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  5. Ooh, I will have to find that one. I hated Memory Keeper's Daughter, so I'm glad to hear that her next book is better. AND! I just read What Alice Forgot, based on your recommendation, and LOVED it. Thanks!

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