The Unremembered Girlby Published 01 Nov 2017
|The Unremembered Girl.pdf|
|Publisher||Lake Union Publishing|
In the deep woods of East Texas, Henry supports his family by selling bootleg liquor. It’s all he can do to keep his compassionate but ailing mother and his stepfather—a fanatical grassroots minister with a bruising rhetoric—from ruin. But they have no idea they’ve become the obsession of the girl in the woods.
Abandoned and nearly feral, Eve has been watching them, seduced by the notion of family—something she’s known only in the most brutal sense. Soon she can’t resist the temptation to get close. Where Henry’s mother sees a poor girl in need, his father sees only wickedness. When Henry forges an unexpected bond with Eve, he believes he might be able to save her. He doesn’t know how wrong he is.
Eve is about to take charge of her own destiny—and that of Henry’s family. As both their worlds spin violently out of control, Henry must make an impossible choice: protect the broken young woman who’s claimed a piece of his soul, or put everyone he loves at risk in order to do the right thing.
"The Unremembered Girl" Reviews
I'm pretty sure the author believes this is a tragic, yet hopeful love/coming of age story. Unfortunately it's actually the story of a selfish ass justifying all his bad decisions [spoilers removed]
Upon reading the word ‘girl’ in the title (coupled with its uninspiring cover) I almost skipped over this one. I’m so glad I paid the book summary closer attention as it delivered an addictive read which I read in one sitting this afternoon.
Lots of subtle things keep the momentum ticking along nicely as threads are cast out to connect the mundane goings-on in community where an unidentified and dishevelled young woman appears out of the blue.
I couldn’t help but instantly wonder about her background. I mean, who is this curious creature lacking social graces and threatening to disrupt everything? Her behaviour raises all kinds of questions as to where she came from and why she’s so guarded. Especially since she sought out company yet doesn’t seem to know what should happen next or what is expected of her.
The way all parties are wary of each other places additional stress on otherwise uncomfortable situations that existed long before ‘the girl’ stumbled into their lives. One thing for sure is that her presence affects the characters in many different ways. For the most part she fills a gap some of them didn’t realise was empty.
Although I don’t feel this is one of those books I’ll find myself thinking about now that I’ve finished it (expect for Alice’s quote about ‘wishes’ which was a classic), it told a good story while it lasted. There were a few emotional ups and downs, and insightful moments too; the counsel of Jonah’s Aunt and Henry “Moonshine” Martell’s mother could give a wise old sage a run for their money any day. “Moonshine” Martell’s mother could give a wise old sage a run for their money any day.
Actual rating: 4/10
Yeah, no. Definitely not my favorite book. The plot jerked along for the whole novel and the characters were two dimensional. While it does smooth over a bit during the second half of the book, I was thoroughly Over It by then and only reading because I Ain't A Quitter. A few notes:
1.) When I say the plot jerked along, I meant it. The transitions between scenes were messy and confusing. Sometimes I had to re-read whole passages just to figure out where I was.
2.) Eve had no character. She felt more like a prop than anything else. She was just kind of there while Henry kept fixing her and her messes.
3.) Livingston's an even flimsier character than Eve. Literally, his only characteristic is that he's a religious nut.
4.) ALSO, the romance! The romance was terrible! There weren't any romantic moments, just the author trying to piece in the actual falling in love process with a quick one paragraph montage of Henry watching her with little hearts in his eyes.
You can also read my review at https://isitfridayyetweb.wordpress.co...
This book was my Kindle First choice for October. The life of a rather dysfunctional family living in the backwaters of Texas is turned upside down by the appearance of Eve, a young woman who has suffered terrible indignities and abuse from a very young age. Having escaped from traffickers, Eve has been secretly watching the family and studying their relationships, and it triggers a yearning inside her for something she has never had. Caroline, the matriarch of the family, welcomes her into the fold with open arms, and Eve soon catches the eye of Henry, Caroline’s son. This could have been a beautiful love story, but Eve is damaged beyond repair from years of abuse, and it is only a matter of time before things go very wrong. Henry, in the throes of passionate obsession, does his best to clean up after Eve’s tragic mistakes, with catastrophic consequences.
This book was listed as Suspence on Amazon, but I didn’t find it suspenseful in the slightest. In fact, I’m not really sure what it was trying to be. I did feel for Eve, who was extremely damaged, and nobody really tried to help her or even scratch the surface of her many problems. Although the story touched on some very ugly issues throughout, it was never described in any detail and the book managed to retain a fairly innocent quality. But there was a lack of description to all aspects of the book, which is why I found the characters quite two-dimensional. I felt that so much more could have been done with the story, but then I am used to reading pretty raw crime and thriller novels, so maybe it was just a little tame compared to what I’m used to.
I gave this book 3 stars on Goodreads.
Good Story, Great Writing.
This book not only had me fighting tears but also left me feeling sick at times about man's inhumanity to man. The story portrays a family living in the South that has been there for generations. Henry has a kindness that is a reflection of his mother, Caroline. His father died when he was two. His stepfather, Livingston, is a preacher who no longer has a church due to his increasing zealotry. He must have been a good man at one time for Caroline to marry him but he has been consumed by his need to be right and respected at all times.
The unremembered girl shows up in the shadows wearing only a ragged dress and layers of ground in dirt. Caroline sees her and sets out food for the starving girl with no name. Caroline's kindness overcomes the girl's fear and she finally coaxes her into the house for a meal. The girl grabs the plate and sits huddled in the corner eating with her hands.
Eliza Maxwell writes as though she experienced this life. She has written interesting, multilayered characters that are believable. I was drawn into the story with the hope that goodness would conquer all the problems. Ms Maxwell had a much better ending than I could have imagined. The book is a five star read and I definitely recommend it to all readers.