The Paradise Trees-Linda Huber
The Paradise Trees is a compelling suspense novel, written in an engaging and pacey style. Linda’s powerful characterisation is inspired by her work with neurological patients, and the book is written with an intense realism that powers the narrative.
I'm two minds about this book. It was a good thriller. You have a deranged murderer and a woman and her daughter marked as his victims. There's a decent if a bit sudden romantic plotline. There're red herrings as to who the murderer is which kept me reading. But despite all this there were such flaws I cannot ignore them. The red herrings seem a bit contrived and are not as subtly worked as I prefer them to be. There was a bit too much simplicity in the way that you were supposed to be guessing which of the choices was the killer. Then there was the style which was second person, present tense which is a perspective I really rarely enjoy. Then there was Alicia-like, she constantly reiterates, over and over, that she wants her daughter, Jenny, to have the best summer ever. But why? Why this desperation that Jenny have a good summer. I mean, yes it's natural to want your kid to enjoy their life, that's the beauty of childhood but Alicia is neurotic about it which made me wonder why? Was the last summer horrible? Why is she so guilty? If she had gone on about only once in awhile, I would've been fine and attributed it to Jenny's negligent father but it's more like once every 25 pages.