Saturday, April 4, 2015

Finding Me by Kathryn Cushman - BookReview

Finding Me by Kathryn Cushman starts with a promising plot. The idea explored in the novel is interesting. However, by the time I reached the first quarter of the book, I knew what has happened, and just waited to see how the characters will react to the whole thing. I loved the idea of the novel, but somehow, the more I read, it became somewhat flat. All in all, it was an interesting book. The plot was what gave it gusto. It is a quick read, it gives a nice image of a small town, America, and it has the potential to be an intense read and make you wonder what will happen next.

But! (These are spoilers from the book, so for whoever wants to read the book, it would be better to not read them.)
The plot: the "bad" character in the book, David Waters/ Don Huddleston stole money from the company he and his best friend had in order to facilitate his escape and build a new life in another state with his mistress and his one year old daughter (he actually made everyone believe he and his daughter, Kelli, died in a boat accident). Over twenty years later, when he and his mistress-turned-wife die in a car wreck, Kelli finds out there is another family she knew nothing about - her mother, a sister and a brother. The novel deals with Kelli's search for her family and her attempts to get to know them better.
For starters, I didn't necessarily feel the characters to be so well developed, if I can use this word. That character, Beth, Kelli's sister, was especially annoying, although she "had a good heart". The main character, Kelli, was OK, but towards the end of the novel she becomes annoying, but this is probably understanding considering the circumstances that brought her there in the first place. For someone who claimed from the very beginning she was pretty strained financially, she did OK with paying two rents, do a TLC on the store she worked at, with money from her own paycheck, and make three trips California-Tennessee. I probably liked the old man, Kenmore, the best. He seemed authentic. What really bothered me was that the characters didn't "speak" that much. Most of the things you found out or learned about, as well the events of the past and what they felt were given straight forward by the author. I would have liked to hear the characters talk more about what mattered, not the silly things they seemed to talk about for half the book.
As I read more and more, the chapters started to be divided in shorter sub-chapters and each sub-chapter seemed to have a last sentence that summed up the feelings, the events, or gave a sort of conclusion. It felt a bit just thrown in there, although I see how they were meant to create the suspence and drama.
And speaking of this, in the last maybe 20 pages of the book, everyone (that is, the other family) learns the truth and all are OK with this. Kelli's fears that they might react badly are understandable, but the suspence was in vain as they all accepted it and simply put it under the label "something to process and think over in time".

I received an ebook copy of this book from Bethany House Publishing in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts expressed here are my own.

3* out of 5


  1. Sounds like a book I wouldn't mind checking out though. Maybe one day!

    Dropping by for Comment and Follow #41 via nomElizabeth

  2. This sounds like an interesting book.
    -Zefaniya (Comment and Follow #41)

  3. Seems like a book I wouldn't pick up honestly, so I was happy to read your spoilers! I feel like I got enough of the book just from that lol. Possibly if it were more suspenseful, and had more of a plot twist. Happy to hear you could get all the way through it though.
    [Comment and Follow #41 - AJStarfish]