Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Map of True Places

I liked Barry’s first novel, The Lace Reader, so I was excited to read her latest. This one also takes place in and around the Salem area and even references some of the characters from the first novel.

Barry does an excellent job creating an environment and making you feel like you want to plan a trip to Salem and take in the beautiful scenery and unique culture. They say you should write about what you know, and it’s obvious that Barry knows and truly loves her hometown.

The story of Zee Finch and her strange and troubled family is interesting and definitely a story worth telling. But I think Barry misses the mark. Some of the events in the story seem far-fetched and forced. And some of the characters are too prescribed and unreal. But the story keeps your interest to the final page.

I reviewed this book on BookBrowse and I gave it a 3 out of 5. It’s not a book that’ll make you think about life differently or that you’ll need to spend time pondering before you move onto something else, but it’s definitely worth reading if you’re looking for something light and entertaining.