Thursday, June 6, 2019

Julie's Review: The Favorite Daughter

Author: Kaira Rouda
Series: None
Publication Date: May 21, 2019
Publisher: Graydon House
Pages: 368
Obtained: Great Thoughts, Great Readers Book Salon

Genre:  Memoir
Rating: 3/5
Bottom Line: Predictable but unreliable narrator
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Library

Summary: Jane Harris lives in a sparkling home in an oceanfront gated community in Orange County. It’s a place that seems too beautiful to be touched by sadness. But exactly one year ago, Jane’s oldest daughter, Mary, died in a tragic accident and Jane has been grief-stricken ever since. Lost in a haze of anti-depressants, she’s barely even left the house. Now that’s all about to change. It’s time for Jane to reclaim her life and her family. Jane’s husband, David, has planned a memorial service for Mary and three days later, their youngest daughter, Betsy, graduates high school. Yet as Jane reemerges into the world, it’s clear her family has changed without her. Her husband has been working long days—and nights—at the office. Her daughter seems distant, even secretive. And her beloved Mary was always such a good girl—dutiful and loving. But does someone know more about Mary, and about her last day, than they’ve revealed? The bonds between mothers and daughters, and husbands and wives should never be broken. But you never know how far someone will go to keep a family together…

Review: You know how you read a book and you want it to be more than it was? That was my experience with The Favorite Daughter. It felt like Ms. Rouda was trying a bit too hard to make her narrator unreliable. There are some good things about the novel though, the matriarch Jane is twisted and delusional. Granted she suffered a huge loss of her daughter a year ago and her husband is a lying ass wipe but she still has one daughter who needs her. Although as you start to get deeper in the novel you just wonder how unhinged she really is. Jane is a trip. She’s completely wrapped up on her own world and view of things. You are never quite sure if she’s full of truth or full of shit. She definitely falls along the line of unreliable narrator.

The cast of characters including her husband and daughter, Betsy are ploys in her bigger plot. Somehow though you know she's not telling you the full truth and that maybe there's a reason her husband has been cheating on her and her daughter hates her.  Something is just a bit off with her and it isn't her grief.

The ending was expected and not at all surprising in the scheme of things. If you are looking for a thriller, then I suggest going with Best Day Ever.



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