Author - Annie Barrows
Title - The Truth According to Us
Format - ebook, audio, hardcover
Find on Amazon
Summary (From Goodreads):In the summer of 1938, Layla Beck’s father, a United States senator, cuts off her allowance and demands that she find employment on the Federal Writers’ Project, a New Deal jobs program. Within days, Layla finds herself far from her accustomed social whirl, assigned to cover the history of the remote mill town of Macedonia, West Virginia, and destined, in her opinion, to go completely mad with boredom. But once she secures a room in the home of the unconventional Romeyn family, she is drawn into their complex world and soon discovers that the truth of the town is entangled in the thorny past of the Romeyn dynasty.
At the Romeyn house, twelve-year-old Willa is desperate to learn everything in her quest to acquire her favorite virtues of ferocity and devotion—a search that leads her into a thicket of mysteries, including the questionable business that occupies her charismatic father and the reason her adored aunt Jottie remains unmarried. Layla’s arrival strikes a match to the family veneer, bringing to light buried secrets that will tell a new tale about the Romeyns. As Willa peels back the layers of her family’s past, and Layla delves deeper into town legend, everyone involved is transformed—and their personal histories completely rewritten.
It isn't often that I have to put down a book I'm reviewing. This one, for me, fell in that category. I tried. I really did try. The summary captured my attention. And I did find parts rather intriguing. But it wasn't enough for me.
First, I was confused. I wasn't sure what character went where. While the confusion lessened as I went along, by the time I was at 64% done, I was still confused. I also found myself not being able to follow the plot very well. Sure I got the general idea - Layla's writing a book and all the characters have their own ideas of what the truth should be.
Second, the chapters seemed to drag on. Literally. I expected to be further along after finishing the chapter (3 for example) than looking at my Kindle and seeing I was only at 5%. I'll admit that I didn't finish the book. I really couldn't take it anymore. It was long and drawn out. I'm not saying that I like short, quick reads. Because I don't. Not really. What I do enjoy is a book that moves along nicely and doesn't feel that it is struggling to make a point. I've read books with well over 1000 pages before and they didn't drag like this one.
Third, the characters. There are alternating point of views, and while I'm used to that, in this book it felt a little abrupt. I didn't like Felix at all. I found him to be too controlling. And Jottie. She's a grown woman. She could have stood up to her brother! I thought Layla was flakey. And Willa was probably the only one who truly intrigued me.
I very rarely will give a book one star. I also very rarely will not finish a book I've been asked to review. I checked the reviews on Amazon on this one. I'm in the minority here. But then again, this particular book really isn't for me. Others may love it. Some obviously do. But for me, I think I'll pass on it.
I received this book for free via NetGalley for the purpose of reviewing. I wasn't required to like the book, only to give my honest opinion, which I have done.
Rating - 1 star