Short Take: Wake me when something happens.
(*Note: I received a free copy of this book for review purposes.*)
Can we please retire the word “unputdownable?” Please? I mean, it was cute enough the first fifty or so times I heard it, but now it’s a word that gets slapped on far too many books that I’m more than happy to put down. It’s right up there with “The Next Gone Girl!” in terms of false advertising.
Take, for example, Abandoned. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that this is the fifth book in a series, and I hadn’t read the first four, but other reviews said that it would be cool as a standalone, so I figured, why not? Then again, the description of this book also called it “unputdownable”, so there’s that.
Abandoned is the story of one woman’s quest to do research. Maxine Revere’s mother Martha walked out of her life when Max was nine, sent a few postcards, and completely disappeared when Max was sixteen. Now that Max is an adult with a hit cable show where she investigates cold cases, she’s decided to use her expertise and resources to solve the mystery in her own life – what happened to Martha Revere?
In the course of the investigation, Maxine will talk to a lot of people. She’ll ask questions, and look at old photos, newspaper articles, and tax records. It’s just about as exciting as it sounds.
Max will be fairly rude to everyone she meets, because she’s a tough independent woman who don’t need no man, but it’s cool, everyone around her will be charmed by this. It’s just as nonsensical as it sounds.
We’re also treated to bits of Martha’s life and correspondences, most of which consist of some version of “I like fun. Why don’t you like fun?” It’s just as grating as it sounds.
Eventually, of course, Deep Dark Secrets are revealed, and there’s a climactic fight scene that lasts about three sentences. One hit, one drop, and the bad guy’s accomplices all surrender peacefully, after which, we get a happily ever after ending (presumably until the next book). It’s just as cheesy as it sounds.
So if you’ve read the other books, and are a fan of the series, go for it, I guess? But if you’re looking for something exciting and FUN (you’ll be sick of that word too by the end), look elsewhere.
The Nerd’s Rating: TWO HAPPY NEURONS (and a nice big salad. Because the food descriptions made me hungry.)