Today’s team review is from Judith, she blogs at http://judithbarrowblog.com/
Judith has been reading The Redemption Song by Laura Wilkinson
I liked Redemption Song; as the blurb says it’s captivating novel. Laura Wilkinson has an even,straightforward writing style that actually disguises the difficulty in keeping together what is a complex story. On the whole the plot runs smoothly, giving equal balance to the tension and the everyday lives of the characters.
The characters of the two protagonists, Saffron and Joe are well written and rounded; it’s easy to empathise with each of them and to follow their progress, both individually and in the way their relationship grows. I liked the descriptions of their appearance; they way they looked, the clothes worn, deftly and subtly inserted without a heavy handed ‘dumping’ of detail. The other characters that provide a background to the story:Rain, Saffron’s mother, Eifion and Ceri are also well defined and add a sub-plot that weaves deftly through the main plot.
The dialogue is realistic, although sometimes the internal dialogue felt too much like the spoken dialogue and less like a stream of consciousness. Saying that, I was able to tell who was speaking all the way through the book; the author gave each character an individual, distinctive voice.
The descriptions of the various settings: the church, the seaside town of Coed Mawr, the pier, are well written and convincing; I think it worth mentioning that there are some beautiful descriptions of Coed Mawr. I found it easy to imagine the characters moving around in each scene
There are only two reasons I didn’t give Redemption Song five stars and the first is a personal one; I became irritated by the drawn out mystery of Joe’s background, the constant mention of his need for revenge and the flatness of the characters, Simon and Freddie. I realised they were friends from Joe’s school-days but they didn’t come alive for me in the way I thought they should have when I discovered their importance to the story. The other reason was I wasn’t quite convinced by the character of Allegra but I’m not sure why. Perhaps it was because I felt she was portrayed as a one-sided character, maybe it was because, as a reader I learned something of her earlier in the book but wasn’t sure exactly why she was part of the story.
Anyway, this didn’t detract from my enjoyment of the story as a whole. I loved Laura Wilkinson’s s writing style and look forward to reading more from this author in the future. I would definitely recommend Redemption Song
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review via Rosie’s Book Review Team #RBRT
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