Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Richest Season by Maryann McFadden

ISBN-10: 1401322700
Publisher: Philomel
Hardcover: 336 pages
Genre: Women's Fiction
First Line: The sky was still dark, as it was every morning when Joanna Harrison began walking the two-mile route that serpentined through the development where she lived .
One Word Review: Beachy

I'd like to say that the copy I read was an advanced reader's edition, and it is possible that certain elements could be alterred before the final printing.

Joanna is a lonely and neglected housewife who decides to leave her life in New Jersey behind and travel to Pawley's Island, South Carolina. There she attempts to rediscover who she is while she deals with the aftermath of her decision in the wake of futher drama.

The Richest Season is the debut novel of Maryann McFadden, and reading it with that in mind leads me to think she could certainly make a name for herself as a writer. She definitely has a knack for allowing the readers a glimps at the locations of her story, and she writes in a way that is easily readable and vividly descriptive.

However, I was slightly underwhelmed with the story. While her writing style is quite good, I felt that the tale itself was only just okay. I also found several instances where there were repetitive phrases - such as two separate characters taking baths at different points in the book, and each slides into the bathtub with an escaped moan (not a direct quote, but the general principle). I feel that a little more ardent editing would fix that, however, and in the final copy, it may in fact be a non-issue.

If you're looking for something to tote to the beach, this might be a pretty good choice. Other than that I'd say that McFadden is definitely someone to watch in the future as she comes into her own.


Anonymous said...

Well...I have this in my TBR pile and keep reading the same kind of responses to the book...that it was okay, not great though.

skrishna said...

First of all, I LOVE your one word review for the book - I think "beachy" suits it perfectly. I also agree with you that the author would be well suited to historical fiction!

Anonymous said...

I clicked down to Comments to tell you how much I enjoyed the one-word-review, and I see SKRISHNA has done the same :)

Sometimes "beachy" is what we're looking for, so this is a great description!