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Sunday, August 30, 2009

A Delightful and Exciting Series of Unlikely Events

I liked this book.

It was exciting (most of the time). It had a nice pace (most of the time). It held my attention, except on those few occasions when a word or a smell or a rock would send my mind drifting back through time, and I would recall the time I hid in a cave with Peeta. But I knew I mustn't think of him, and I would throw myself back into the book at hand.

I loved the setting, both historically and geographically. I liked hearing the stories from Marta's time working with the resistance, and of Jacob and Emma. I wish I would have read book one first, because that setting sounds even more exciting and interesting.

The plot twists were deliciously unlikely, almost campy ("I heard a familiar voice. But, no. It couldn't be... I slowly turn around/lift my head/search the crowd/walk around the corner. Paul?/Charles?/Emma?/Simon?/Dava? It can't be!") HOWEVER, I found myself enjoying the tangled plot and watching as it all came together nicely at the end.

As a love story, it fell short, I'm afraid. Marta and Paul's relationship felt two-dimensional and artificial. I found myself more interested Marta and Simon's more complicated relationship, and hoping that they would fall in love (that was before he tried to kill her of course). But at least there was an interesting tension between Marta and Simon. With Paul, it was surprisingly easy. The author just told us they were instantly in love, without really showing us how or why that happened.

As a suspense, I very much enjoyed it. In fact, I was happy reading about Marta going along on her own in Prague and Germany, and when Paul showed up out of nowhere, I was almost disappointed.

While I was reading it, I could not stop thinking about two old movies from my childhood. Ones that I loved and watched over and over. The first is Shining Through, a 1992 movie starring Melanie Griffith and Michael Douglas. You should rent it if you haven't seen it. It's a spy/romantic drama movie set in the same era. The second movie is American Dreamer, from 1985. It's a suspense/comedy, hil-air-i-ous, and gave us such lines as "Rebecca Ryan slowly unbuttoned her blouse." and "I told you I always get my man ... even when he's a woman!"

Thanks for picking it Cristin!

Interesting facts I got from my Kindle.
This phrase:
"Wait here." <--was in there 23 times
And this phrase:
"I don't understand." <--was in there 52 times

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