Saturday, 20 February 2016

Review: Pretty Baby by Mary Kubica

Book: Pretty Baby

Author: Mary Kubica

Pages: 380

Read: On Kindle

Read in: 2-3 hours

Plot Summary: She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can't get the girl out of her head...

Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family's objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.

Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow's past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she's willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.

Things I Liked: This was a book I recently bought as a part of my ebooks haul for February.  There were a few things I liked about it, here goes:

1. The premise of the book sounded interesting, which is why we bought it in the first place. A do-gooder who takes in a stranger and her baby and then there are interesting things that follow. The first half of this book was interesting. It makes you winder who Willow is and why is she here.. is there some link between Willow, her baby and Heidi's husband- Chris? Is there some link between Heidi's daughter and this girl- Willow? Or was Willow sent into Heidi's life on purpose? You get the idea- so many questions were raised by the premise of this book, which is always a good thing!

2. I liked that there were chapters from multiple peoples' perspectives- Heidi, Chris and Willow. We go to see some situations from multiple perspectives, which was nice.

3. Willow was an interesting character. The only one in this book who evokes empathy.

Things I Didn't Like: Quite a few things:

1.This book was blurbed as a 'psychological thriller' and, unfortunately, it was anything but that! This was not really a thriller at all.. nothing psychological about it either. This book is, at best, a mystery... that also an eminently guessable one once you hit the 20% mark of the book. So, that was a huge let down.

2. The characters lacked substance. The author did very little and basic character development. None of the characters seemed 'real'- they seemed very superficial. It is like you knew a few superficial things about them but not what really drives them or what their wounds, motivations are... The very cardboard-like characters made it difficult to muster up empathy or sympathy for what happened to them.

3. The big reveal in this book is very, very predictable. {I actually yawned when I wrote that line!} You can pretty much guess once you learn, very early on in the book, that Willow's parents died when she was a kid and she is taken in by a distant uncle and his wife. From there on, it is pretty simplistic to guess what happened and, even, who the baby she has with her is. Disappointing. I was hoping for a slightly more complicated narrative with some unexpected twists etc. but, alas, that was not to be.

4. Heidi is so annoying. She is well-meaning and a do-gooder but you can see why her family is a bit fed up with her! I found her voice in the book very off-putting!

Rating: 2/5

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