Thursday, November 12, 2009

BookLook Review of a sappy sweet book

Some book club members used to get annoyed at me because I was critical of the sappy sweet books. Now I can tell even more people how much they annoy me by publishing it in the newspaper- and I know it is just a matter of personal taste.

“Sundays at Tiffany’s”

It’s that time of year when the sap starts to run. When I was young it was a fun treat to see the taps on the Maple trees with their tin buckets hanging below and anticipate the sweetness produced after it has been boiled down. In Canada maple is the national flavour (Canadian spelling of course). We love our maple syrup, our maple sugar candy our maple fudge…you get the picture. I read a book this week that would qualify as sappy and syrupy but not maple flavored or delicious.

Author James Patterson writes two types of books apparently - the thrilling murder mystery and the sappy fairytale. I stopped reading his mystery books awhile back, and after just one taste of his romantic fiction, he is off my list for good. He also couldn’t come up with the unbelievable plot or characters without help. Gabrielle Charbonnet was his assistant author. Her name is printed so far away from his and in such tiny print that I almost missed it. She may ok with it now that the book is published and it is so bad it won’t do anything to help her career.

The beginning of the book is the best part. Eight year old Jane is a precocious only child dining with her imaginary friend Michael while her famous neglectful mother sits across the restaurant with a business client. This is a great premise, and the reader wonders what will happen to Jane as the story progresses. Will love conquer all? Will the girl get the man of her dreams? Can the poor little rich girl buy happiness and the love of her mother? If it sounds too predictable and too unbelievable that’s because it is. Since there is so little plot I don’t dare even write a paragraph to sum it up. I was hoping for “City of Angels” or at least “Velveteen Rabbit” but instead it was just a collection of stereotypes struggling to escape from a soap opera.

One of the best things about this book is that it is short – but too bad it isn’t short and sweet. The aftertaste of artificial flavoring just about ruined my day. Sometimes you read a book that just isn’t your taste and “Sundays at Tiffany’s” is way too sweet for me.

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