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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

DNF Discussion: The Shadow Sister by Lucinda Riley

the shadow sister

The Shadow Sister by Lucinda Riley
Book 3 in The Seven Sisters series
e-book, hardcover, 512 pages
Atria Books
April 18, 2017
DNF
goodreads button

Genre: Historical Fiction

Source: Received from the publisher for review

Book Blurb:

Travel through the lush English countryside and explore the magnificent estates of the British aristocracy in this next spellbinding love story in The Seven Sisters series by #1 internationally bestselling author Lucinda Riley.

Star D’Apli├Ęse is at a crossroads in her life after the sudden death of her beloved father—the elusive billionaire, affectionately called Pa Salt by his six daughters, all adopted from across the four corners of the world. He has left each of them a clue to her true heritage, and Star nervously decides to follow hers, which leads her to an antiquarian bookshop in London, and the start of a whole new world.

A hundred years earlier, headstrong and independent Flora MacNichol vows she will never marry. She is happy and secure in her home in England’s picturesque Lake District—just a stone’s throw away from the residence of her childhood idol, Beatrix Potter—when machinations lead her to London, and the home of one of Edwardian society’s most notorious society hostesses, Alice Keppel. Flora is torn between passionate love and her duty to her family, but finds herself a pawn in a larger game. That is, until a meeting with a mysterious gentleman unveils the answers that Flora has been searching for her whole life...

As Star learns more of Flora’s incredible journey, she too goes on a voyage of discovery, finally stepping out of the shadow of her sister and opening herself up to the possibility of love.

I want to first start off by saying that this is NOT a complete review because I did not finish the book.  I completed approximately 60% of the book, and that felt like extensive effort. For those of you that have been with me for awhile now you know how rare it is that I DNF a book. Could I have finished reading this one? Yes, but it was taking so long to slog through the pages and I quite honestly was struggling to find interest to pick it back up again.

I like the premise of the series – each book focusing on one of the sisters that were adopted by a man of whom the reader (and the sisters) have little background knowledge of. Each on a quest of discovery of where they come from thus bringing the reader through a contemporary and historical storyline. I have had a lot of success with stories that move between both a history and contemporary timeline in the past, and it worked to some extent here, but I found the historical story line vastly more interesting than that of the contemporary. The reason for this…the main character Star. I found her SO boring. She had no personality and every time she was in a scene I felt like a wet blanket was being thrown over the plot. In that modern storyline I actually enjoyed the two male side characters the most: Mouse and Orlando, they at least had fascinating and quirky personalities. The historical was definitely the stronger storyline of the two. While Flora occasionally frustrated me, I felt it was appropriate to the storyline and she had a lot going on in her life. I felt for her and how her heart was ripped apart as she tried to make the right decisions in life. Basically I was interested in finding out what ultimately happened to Flora, but could have cared less about what happened to Star. Every time we emerged out of the historical storyline the plot came to a screeching halt and I would put down the book and not be interested in picking it back up. I think that this could have been a much stronger book if the contemporary story line was eliminated.

In case anyone suggests that maybe I would have enjoyed the story more if I had read the first 2 books in the series, I don’t think that this at all affected how I felt about the story. There is quite a lot of backstory provided and even information given on what happened to the sisters of the first two books that I was comfortable with the timeline.




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