Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Review: 16 Lighthouse Road

16 Lighthouse Road by Debbie Macomber
2 stars

Reasons for reading: a friend recommended Macomber to me; Number title for Four Month Challenge

Dear Reader,
You don't know me yet, but in a few hours that's going to change. You see, I'm inviting you to my home and my town of Cedar Cove because I want you to meet my family, friends and neighbors. Come and hear their stories—maybe even their secrets!

I have to admit that my own secrets are pretty open. My marriage failed some years ago, and I have a rather…difficult relationship with my daughter, Justine. Then there's my mother, Charlotte, who has plenty of opinions and is always willing to share them.

Here's an example: I'm a family court judge and she likes to drop in on my courtroom. Recently I was hearing a divorce petition.

In Charlotte's view, young Cecilia and Ian Randall hadn't tried hard enough to make their
marriage work—and I agreed. So I rendered my judgment: Divorce Denied.

Well, you wouldn't believe the reaction! Thanks to an article by Jack Griffin, the editor of our local paper (and a man I wouldn't mind seeing more of!), everyone's talking.

Cedar Cove—people love it and sometimes they leave it, but they never forget it!
See you soon…

First lines: "Cecilia Randall had heard of people who, if granted one wish, would choose to live their lives over again. Not her. She'd be perfectly content to blot just one twelve-month period from her twenty-two years. The past twelve months."

My thoughts: This didn't really do it for me. I was expecting something cozy about small-town life and I sort of got it, but everyone in Cedar Cove just had too many problems. I know you need conflict for a story, but I was expecting it to be about things like...I dunno...who wins the Best Pie ribbon at the fair or something. But no - it starts out with Cecilia Randall, mentioned above, who wants to eradicate the past year because her newborn daughter died while her husband was at sea in a submarine. Babies dying does not hook me into wanting to read a book! And then there's the bastard of a husband who vanishes (He leaves the town librarian, can you imagine?? Who would do such a thing?) and the older creepy guy who wants a sexless relationship with the judge's daughter. Happy endings or at least okay resolutions abounded by the end, but it was just too much unhappiness and unpleasantness to get there.

I think it would appeal to a certain type of patron, so I'm glad I know about her for people who may ask at the library, but I don't think I'll be reading another one, certainly not in this series.


Anonymous said...

Doesn't sound like what I'd expect from Macomber, but then it's been awhile since I read one of her books.

tinylittlelibrarian said...

Yeah, it's not what I expected from what I'd heard about her. Maybe it was just a rough start to this one series? I dunno.