If you like your tangents long and winded, then THE SPLENDOUR FALLS may just be the book for you. The dialogue may lack purpose and direction; the descriptions may be verbose to the point that it’ll keep your cabinet chock full of words; and you may find yourself meandering through a meadow filled with daisies and daffodils, but that’s just all part of the experience. Not parts I looked forward to, mind you, but I’m sure someone out there will just eat that up faster than a glazed doughnut.
While this may have been classified as suspense (and we all know Amazon is the authority on books *cough cough*), the only suspense I managed was if I could keep my eyes on the prize and make it all the way to the end without the aid of toothpicks or hallucinations. Instead, I’d rather see this novel classified under romance or historical or some combination thereof, with its castles and ancient letters and German occupation.
As writers, we understand the importance of place, but must we really mention Chinon (the name of the town) 108 times. I believe I received the message loud and clear after the first 107 times, thank you very much. Clos des Cloches received quite a few mentions as well—27 to be exact, or four times less than the specific town. What a shame. It was the little castle that could, but it just ran out of fireplaces.
The characters did prove somewhat interesting, but I lost sight of them amidst all the other words and phrases and tortuous plot points.
On a side note, I’d like to thank my beautiful wife for bringing to light the fact that nearly half of my one and two-star reads come from NetGalley picks, which either means I can’t pick worth shit, or when it’s free, I somehow manage to lose all sense of judgment and click that button faster than Pavlov’s dog. I promise to try and pick better in the future. In the meantime, though, we may have to deal with a few more less than glorious reads. If nothing else, I’ll do my best to bring the entertainment.
Ending with this glorious misstep of a novel, I’ll say the conclusion didn’t really do me any favors, nor did it necessarily enhance the story either.
I received this book for free through NetGalley.