The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel + Book Review

9781101906668

Flea & Ticks Botanical Dog Collar + Arava-Dead Sea Pet Spa / #ProductReview

description

Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die.

After her mother’s suicide, fifteen year-old Lane Roanoke came to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother’s mysterious family, but she quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But when she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family, she ran fast and far away.

Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Did she run too? Or something worse? Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to help search, and to ease her guilt at having left Allegra behind. Her homecoming may mean a second chance with the boyfriend whose heart she broke that long ago summer. But it also means facing the devastating secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.

As it weaves between Lane’s first Roanoke summer and her return, The Roanoke Girls shocks and tantalizes, twisting its way through revelation after mesmerizing revelation, exploring the secrets families keep and the fierce and terrible love that both binds them together and rips them apart.

review

* Trigger Warning: Descriptions of Abuse, Sexual Abuse, and Suicide*

I was actually pretty excited to read “The Roanoke Girls” since it sounded like the perfect dark, gritty, and twisted mystery/thriller but boy was I wrong. I had not read any reviews so I was basing my excitement off of the books actual description and the hype on several reading lists promoting it. This was super disappointing because it wasn’t any of the things I listed above…. well it was twisted just not in the way I was expecting and it wasn’t shocking at all, just gross and also pretty boring.

PLOT

I absolutely love dark, messed up books if they actually have a good plot line that is shocking and intriguing. That is actually my favorite kind! I can handle some pretty heavy stuff in books including the abuse and sexual abuse that is present in this book but only when it isn’t the SOLE focus of the book. I am not even joking when I say that this book revolves 100% around dysfunctional sexual relationships! There is no other plot and nothing else going on at all! I have to say this was the most disappointing aspect of the book because I was expecting a fast paced thriller and all I got was this!

I don’t want to give too much away even though the “deep, dark family secret” is revealed way too early on in the book, seriously you’ll know exactly what’s going on right away and then there’s no plot twist really at all after that. The “secret” is also very unbelievable. It’s honestly just ridiculous, because really all of these girls are subject to the “secret”? Really? And no one did anything? Really?

So besides that “family drama” the only other thing going on is Lane’s “search” for her cousin Allegra and let me tell you she does a terrible job of actually searching. She was more focused on having sex with her former flame, Cooper than her missing cousin. I did like the inclusion of flashbacks from Lane and Allegra and also all of the “Roanoke Girls” I thought they were interesting enough for the most part, they added some story. Although I will say once again that the flashbacks were, like everything else in this book, all about sex.

The ONLY  reason I rated this book three stars instead of one was because the writing is fairly good and I was interested enough to keep reading up until the very end. Overall  I think the plot was pretty predictable and the ending was just…cliche.

characters

The characters in this book were all awful, unlikable, and had absolutely NO personality! They were honestly all a mess and not the hot kind! I feel like the author tried really hard to make these characters complex but it just fell extremely short, they were dull and boring. Lane, the main character, is very spineless and NOT someone I want to root for at all. As I mentioned earlier it seems that she cares more about getting drunk and banging her ex than she does about finding her missing cousin. Allegra, is the missing cousin and she’s very vain and manipulative but you know those characters that are so evil and scheming you love them? Yeah, Allegra isn’t one of those characters, she just gets really annoying….

As for the other characters they were like wet mops too. Sure they had lots of flaws but they didn’t really develop the characters at all.

romance

Who doesn’t love some romance thrown in a story? Well you won’t find that here! Okay there is romance but to me it is mostly just sex and no feelings, yes there are some “feelings” but there is just such a lack of chemistry it’s blah. Plus on top of that ALL of the relationships are extremely unhealthy and dysfunctional!

in conclusion

Once again I’ll say just how disappointed I was with this story because I was expecting a fast paced mystery/thriller and instead I got no mystery whatsoever! Yeah, should we go look for the missing cousin? Nah, let’s just have a bunch of sex and get wasted instead of actually dealing with our problems! Woo hoo! That sums up the entire book! The story had so much potential.

 

What I Liked:

  • The writing was good enough
  • It was short so I didn’t suffer long

What I Didn’t Like:

  • The fact that the sole focus is abuse and sexual abuse
  • No mystery whatsoever
  • The plot twist is predictable and revealed early on
  • The plot is sex, sex, sex and nothing else (trust me, the sex scenes aren’t even good!)
  • The characters are unlikable and boring

RECOMMEND

No. Not really. Especially if you’re sensitive to the triggers I listed at the top of the review! The story is just plain boring and disturbing. I really have nothing good to say about “The Roanoke Girls” except that the writing is adequate and it mildly held my attention. This is the first book I have read by Amy Engel as it is her first novel for adults. I am not really sure if I will read future books from her or not. I had such high expectations of this one and it has been disappointing to say the least. If you were hoping for a fast paced thriller with some mystery and intriguing family drama, then just steer clear of this one!

Diane

I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for my honest review.

Disclosure: This post may or may not contain affiliate or sponsored links (which will be stated at the beginning of the post). All words & images COPYRIGHT 2017 Life of Diane. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site is strictly prohibited. The opinions expressed are that of Life Of Diane only and will always remain honest and true to our readers.

Life After + A Novel By Katie Ganshert / #BookReview

 

9781601429025

Flea & Ticks Botanical Dog Collar + Arava-Dead Sea Pet Spa / #ProductReview

Synopsis: 

It could have been me.

Snow whirls around an elevated train platform in Chicago. A distracted woman boards the train, takes her seat, and moments later a fiery explosion rips through the frigid air, tearing the car apart in a horrific attack on the city’s transit system. One life is spared. Twenty-two are lost.

A year later, Autumn Manning can’t remember the day of the bombing and she is tormented by grief—by guilt. Twelve months of the question constantly echoing. Why? Why? Why? Searching for answers, she haunts the lives of the victims, unable to rest.

Paul Elliott lost his wife in the train bombing and wants to let the dead rest in peace, undisturbed and unable to cause more pain for his loved ones. He wants normalcy for his twelve-year-old daughter and young son, to see them move beyond the heartbreak. But when the Elliotts and Autumn are unexpectedly forced together, he fears she’ll bring more wreckage in her wake.

In Life After, Katie Ganshert’s most complex and unforgettable novel yet, the stirring prose and authentic characters pose questions of truth, goodness, and ultimate purpose in this emotionally resonant tale.

My Thoughts:

Life After by Katie Ganshert was beautiful novel. I was privileged to get to read an advanced copy. It has stunning characters and an emotional and deep plot that really stays with you afterwards and makes you think. Being a survivor is a very common plot but she is the only survivor out of a dreadful nightmare situation. It deals with very serious subjects, survivors guilt and the bombing of the train are unimaginable. You usually think about the ones that perished when you hear a tragic story but the author has you wrapped up in the survivors story and how they deal & the changes to their life.

Sad, heartbreaking, and intriguing are just a few ways I would describe her story. I was immediately drawn to the main character. She woke up wanting answers and the pain and rollercoaster ride kept me hooked. I have never read a book by Katie Ganshert, but after reading this one, I’m tempted to read her other books. The pages went by quickly. Life After tells the story of one woman surviving a deadly train accident. No one else lived. Only her…it was hard to not want to know more. It is a powerful story. I couldn’t stop reading this Christian/ women’s fictional piece. Overall, I highly recommend it!

Katie Ganshert is the author of several novels and works of short fiction. Katie lives in eastern Iowa with her family.

For More Information On Life After Click This Link

I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for my honest review.

Disclosure: This post may or may not contain affiliate or sponsored links (which will be stated at the beginning of the post). All words & images COPYRIGHT 2017 Life of Diane. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site is strictly prohibited. The opinions expressed are that of LOD / LODR__ only and will always remain honest and true to our readers.