I remember this being billed as a murder mystery. Well it is about a murder, that's true but its certainly not a mystery. Firstly because the murder is explained right at the beginning and secondly, because the plot is cliched & predictable - everything that happens can be seen a mile off. By the end of the first couple of chapters, you know exactly what's going to happen.
I have no problem with a story that is predictable if it is done well but this just really isn't. The narrative is way too fragmented - it flits between heaven, earth, Susie, her family, the past, the present, etc. Again, that is not a problem, it can be a useful technique when done well - but my problem with it here, is that nothing is written in any sort of depth or with any kind of impact. Its not badly written, but its not well written either - its just bland and uninspiring.
The subject matter of the story should make it an important one & I wanted to care, I really did - but its butterfly-style narrative just left me absolutely cold. I didn't care about any of the characters or what happened, all I cared about was being able to stop reading it. In the end, I gave up a third of the way through. I tried flicking through the remainder, in case something there might have grabbed me back into the story, but sadly no. Normally I will read a book til the end, even if I'm not enjoying it, but with this my over-riding emotion was pure lethargy & I just felt life really is too short to complete it.
Sometimes, there are books or films that become hugely popular & you have absolutely no idea why. This book's huge popularity is its only real mystery.
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