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Thursday 4 July 2024

The Couple at the Lake House by James Caine


I discovered when I started to read this that it's a relatively short book…about two thirds the length of your average thriller. By the time I'd got a quarter of the way through, I did start to think, well, thank heavens it's not that long.

Firstly: present-tense narrative. Oof! Why do authors use it? It never works. Secondly: repetition. Not only were the characters constantly nodding, in the worse case of tautology, they were nodding their heads...repeatedly: in fact, 82 times in 251 pages, along with almost the same amount of shaking heads. In between all the nodding and shaking of heads, there are many grammatical errors.

The main character, Sydney, kept referring to Matt, her husband-to-be, as her fiancé, instead of using his name. (Why?)  And when any of the other characters referred to Sydney as Matt's fiancée, the spelling was consistently wrong: she was also a 'fiancé'.

I can't deny the plot had legs (see About the Book below), but the characters were one-dimensional, and it was hard to feel any kind of emotion for any of them. The writing was amateurish and the editing even more so.

Needs work and development.

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