Monday, July 21, 2008

flip-flopping characters

Woman of a Thousand Secrets by Barbara Wood
Rating: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
Genre: historical fiction
Review: Not having much knowledge about Central American geography, or history, or the mythology of the peoples native to that region, I can only assume that Barbara Wood has done her research. And if you want an easy-to-read primer on any of those subjects, this would be a great book to read.

If you're looking for really great characters, though, this is probably not the book for you. For the first two-thirds of the book the two main characters go back and forth every few pages between "I can't wait to get away from" and "How can I possibly live without" the other. While the two of them are filled with angst, the third main character is constantly plotting their individual downfalls in the background. I couldn't help but think of him as a Mayan Wile E. Coyote, but I don't think Wood meant him to be so ridiculous.

Still, the story's pretty good. I did want to find out what happened at the end. And I was pleased that Wood opted against wrapping everything with a pretty bow. It's a mostly happy ending, although not entirely, and I was particularly impressed with how she didn't answer every single question, but also didn't leave me with the feeling that there were a lot of loose ends.

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