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The Children's Hour: 02/23/07

The Children's Hour

I tried reading The Children's Hour for a Bookcrossing bookring because it came so highly recommended and because the blurb on the back of the book sounded interesting: "...But when their sister Georgie, now somewhat frail and forgetful, comes to stay at Ottercombe, memories of their past start to revisit them. As a child, Georgie claimed to know all their secrets — secrets that she now wants to share..."

If there were any secrets worth sharing, I didn't last long enough in the book to find out what the secrets were. I made it to page 112 of 442 and each new page became more and more of a chore to read. I seem to be the only person who hasn't enjoyed this book but I am often a contrarian reader. Given the over powering domesticity to this book, I think this is the closest I've gotten to an "Aga Saga" and I hope it's my last.

I don't like stories where the characters do nothing but sit around and talk about their feelings and that was all the characters did in the quarter of the book that I read. I also don't particularly like weird sounding nicknames that aren't explained. Weird character names are harder to remember and are annoying. So having a character nicknamed "Nest" didn't help my souring view of The Children's Hour.

I did skip ahead to read the last three chapters, a trick I often do when I'm feeling doubtful about my interest in finishing a book. The last three chapters are just as schmaltzy and upbeat as the first three chapters are. In other words, there is no change and no sign of progress. The characters worry about stuff, reminisce about stuff, have secret stuff revealed (apparently) and have good stuff come about in a nice tidy way. Whoopee.

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