Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Book Review: "Don't You Cry" by Mary Kubica

"Don't You Cry" by Mary Kubica will be published on May 17,2016. This is my second Kubica book I've read. I read "The Good Girl" a couple of years ago and LOVED it. In that review I actually said I'd have given it more than five stars if I could have so I had high hopes for Ms. Kubica's newest thriller. I am sorry to say I was somewhat disappointed. I found Kubica's latest offering a little to atmospheric and slow.

Quinn Collins' roommate, Esther Vaughan, has gone missing. All Quinn finds after her night out is her roommate's bedroom window open to the fire escape and a cryptic letter to "My Dearest". It puzzles Quinn that Ester seems to have disappeared since Ester is usually the more conscientious roommate. It takes some hours until Quinn truly starts to worry but then what does one do? Call the police or Ester's family? Quinn knows it's too early to put in a missing person's report and Ester never talked about her family. What's a slightly scatterbrained roommate to do now? In the same time period, Alex Gallo, living in a small town in Michigan, falls under the spell of an unusual girl who enters the coffee shop where he works. He calls her Pearl and as he harbors his crush on her, he tries to get to know this enigmatic and ostensibly lovely young woman. 

Kubica's story weaves back and forth between Alex and Quinn as the reader tries desperately to figure out what's happening in each of these characters' lives and whether there's a connection between them. The problem is that the book tries too hard to create an ambiance and instead just becomes wordy. I appreciate letting the reader slowly get to know our main characters but I feel like one could strip away half of the words and get a good, well worked short story instead of this book.

Very rarely do I skip or speed-read. I say this for two reasons, I'm terrible at it and I find it makes the book less enjoyable. But in this case I seriously found myself skipping entire paragraphs and sometimes even PAGES of atmospheric dialogue about the weather, the scene the heat or cold of the scene, the leaves, flowers and people walking by, ad nauseam. I finally stopped caring about Alex and his strange little crush and only wanted to know what happened to Ester. By the second half of the book I was pretty sure something weird had happened. I'll give the author kudos for the fact that I didn't actually figure out exactly what was happening until the end. Unfortunately, since there were so many, many wasted words, I found myself not as much interested as I should have been. In the end I just wanted.. the end to be reached. Hopefully with her next book Ms. Kubica will get back to her excellent and wonderfully unique writing with less atmosphere added to increase the wordage, because "The Good Girl" was just that good. I won't easily give up on an author that can write such a fantastic thriller as that just because this was a slight misstep.

Best,

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