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The book by McNeil generated a lot of discussion, far more than most of the book club members may have expected.
The general view was that the book was a light read, suited best for the beach or a garden in a real life B&B.
The characters of the book were discussed and most were well received. There was little criticism of the book, the story, the plot or the characters. If there was a criticism it was for the romantic episode described near the latter part of the book. To some it sounded a bit contrived, as if the publisher had made a demand that something with a bit of sensuality be inserted. But it was done so without real pizzazz, without passion, without steam. Maybe the publisher was afraid McNeil might alienate her fans with something erotic which would be out of character for any of her writing. But the insertion of the May-October relationship of Eddie and Molly might be a little too Hollywoodish detracting from the authenticity of the read. Maybe.
When moderator Lynsey asked that a final ‘number of stars’ assessment be made by each of the club members for the book, the range of stars was surprising. No one gave the book a 4 star rating, though there were many that hedged their bets with 2.5 stars. One member who was particularly adamant about reading another ‘British setting’ book was very in giving a 3 star rating. Overall though, everyone agreed the book was light fluff without real depth, without deep character development or profound theme. One member even said something to the effect that the universal values expressed by the author were those that no one could reject. How true.
Next month, the book is “Adultery” by Paul Coelho and the moderator is Kulsy. The meeting will be on Mar. 14th.