- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 1567 KB
- Print Length: 566 pages
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01GT454S8
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,768,473 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Watermarked Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
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I loved the style of this novel, told by four different people. The novel captures the gritty real life situations that these unique characters face. The characters all had their individual flaws that I found made them more realistic and endearing. Although I did find it hard to warm to the immature Ray. The story totally sucks you into the New York City world, and I enjoyed being part of this world. I found Watermarked to be a thoughtful read, seeing how your actions not only affect others but how they are seen in others eyes. Sometimes this way of portraying the characters POV makes you lose the overarching storyline, but I enjoyed how I was able to see the characters from views of others and think the author worked hard to keep the thread of the story alive.
I would have liked to have seen more romance develop as this was truly gritty and painful at times to see how the characters muddle their way through their lives, however maybe this would have made the book lose its impact on me. The end did leave me still having questions and wanting to know more, but maybe there is a sequel on its way.
Good, thoughtful read and I look forward to reading more from this author.
This book may not be for everybody. It is a very slow burn—one that is reminiscent of the HBO series “Girls” inasmuch as it is focuses on multiple characters’ day-to-day lives rather than any main character and his or her conflicts/goals/transformations (though even "Girls" has a main character--Hannah). On one hand, rotating POVs with each chapter allows us to witness each character’s struggles and transformation. On the other hand, the lack of mooring that results from having no main character and no cohesive plot or obvious thematic focus left me, as the reader, adrift. This chosen structure (to put characters on constant rotation) made pacing and tension difficult to understand. I knew that the reader was intended to bear witness to these characters’ journeys as they fumbled their way into true adulthood. Yet, because it fell short on aforementioned plot or thematic focus, it was hard to pin down what the book was really about.
This book had some beautifully-written moments, but, for me, it didn’t hold together well as a complete work. And I'll admit, the plot-light book is REALLY hard to pull off. In order for a plot-light book to work, the characters or situations have to be so unique, compelling, or ring so true that the enjoyment comes from the scene-by-scene reading experience, or from big, resonant truisms that come through when you add it all up (and I don't think this book had either of those). There were some resonant characterizations, but also big incredibilities (not a single one of the characters knew how to be happy, and they were very serious for young people—only one of them was clinically depressed but all of them seem riddled with self-doubt and lacked the optimism and idealism that real young people tend to have). I would have given this book four stars based on these issues alone, but I knocked it down to three due to noticeable typos and proofreading issues, which also detracted from the book. Despite this rating, I do think the author has promise, and will improve as she dives more deeply into craft.
- There were times when I felt the writing was circuitous and the author kept using different scenes and events to hammer home the same observations about the characters. I think the book could have been more potent if several of these scenes had been omitted. The last third of the first half and the first third of the second half suffered because of this.
- Ray was pretty much insufferable for me for most of the book. I think her behavior was meant to come across as quirky and interesting but a lot of her actions were just juvenile and sophomoric. She was often self-centered, reactive and aggressive in a way that showed her lack of understanding of boundaries than it did anything else. When she would do something like call her roommate stupid or a dummy or snatch a book from someone and throw it across the room because they weren't giving her undivided attention, or resolve that she is going to verbally and physically confront a waitress because she has decided that she obviously must have had a prior relationship with her dinner date...well, it made me uncomfortable. It was a stretch for me to imagine that someone would willingly want to spend time with her. Ray seemed more high school while everyone else seemed collegiate. To be fair, she did undergo some character growth but for me it was almost too little too late.
So to end on a positive note I will be keeping an eye on this author. Good literary fiction seems to be disappearing beneath a tidal wave of genre fiction but someone who can write something like Watermarked gives me hope that fiction-by-the-numbers just may not take over the world after all!
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