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Review: If There Be Thorns by V.C. Andrews

226706Out of the ashes of evil Chris and Cathy made such a loving home for their splendid children…

Fourteen-year-old Jory was so handsome, so gentle. And Bart had such a dazzling imagination for a nine year old.

Then the lights came on in the abandoned house next door. Soon the Old Lady in Black was there, watching their home with prying eyes, guarded by her strange old butler. Soon the shrouded woman had Bart over for cookies and ice cream and asked him to call her “Grandmother.”

And soon Bart’s transformation began…

A transformation that sprang from “the book of secrets” the gaunt old butler had given him… a transformation fed by the hint of terrible things about his mother and father… a transformation that led him into shocking acts of violence, self-destruction and perversity.

And now while this little boy trembles on the edge of madness, his anguished parents, his helpless brother, an obsessed old woman and the vengeful, powerful butler await the climax to a horror that flowered in an attic long ago, a horror whose thorns are still wet with blood, still tipped with fire….

Oh how I wish we had negative ratings on here. This book would be a prime example of how not to write a book, especially the third book in your series.

I don’t know where the author was trying to go or what she was trying to do, but this book is a big steaming pile of dog poop. I have so many criticisms that it would take me even longer than it took me to actually push myself through this mess.

I’m all for seeing a different point of view in a book, but let me just say, this book would have been better off in Cathy’s self centered, “I need to be raped to feel loved” point of view than her children. Jory is perfect. So perfect, I bet he could rival’s Alex Cross’ children in the next stepford children pageant. But Bart.. Bart is a stark raving mad lunatic who somehow manages to escape being locked up despite the fact he is clearly a psychopath.

Clearly the author didn’t know the difference between a two year old and a ten year old, because for someone reason Cindy can speak just as well as Bart can. And the hates… oh the hates. “Hate raisins on cereal.” “Hate boring old graves.” “Hate old grandmothers who wear all black.” Honestly, I’m surprised Cathy didn’t snap, kill Bart and hide the body in the attic. At least then the story would have been more interesting.

Half the time, you don’t know which child’s mind you are in for a few sentences. In several of Jory’s chapters, there are clear references to events that didn’t make sense. For example, apparently after avoiding the house next door like the plague the entire book, he mentions a conversation with the butler about girls? When the hell did that happen? In the two seconds between them discovering John was behind Cathy’s disappearance and the house going up in flames?

The saddest thing is, this doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface about the many things wrong with this book. Clearly V.C. Andrews had the worst editor in the world, because yet again, I’m plagued with overused hyphens, missing spaces between words and the constant desire to sound out Cathy’s name. It’s CATHERINE not Cath-erine. URGH!

Now I must go drown myself in the tub before I finish the last book in the series. Talk about being a masochist.


Gold Star

About Kristine

As an aspiring author, avid bookworm, fitness fanatic and dedicated mother, there just aren't enough hours in the day. I write or post about things I'm passionate about and spend my time trying to make the most of every day. Life may be a tough journey, but I have my ruby red slippers and am content on skipping along this yellow brick road until the end of the line.

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