Monday, June 18, 2012

E-Reading: Book Review of The Good Father by Diane Chamberlain

Name of Book: The Good Father

Author: Diane Chamberlain

ISBN:  0778313468

Publisher: Mira

Type of book: single parents, abandonment, death, bad decisions, 2004-2011, wealth, hypocrites

Year it was published: 2012

Summary:

A beloved daughter. A devastating choice. And now there's no going back.

Four years ago, nineteen-year-old Travis Brown made a choice: to raise his newborn daughter on his own. While most of his friends were out partying and meeting girls, Travis was at home, changing diapers and worrying about keeping food on the table. But he's never regretted his decision. Bella is the light of his life. The reason behind every move he makes. And so far, she is fed. Cared for. Safe.

But when Travis loses his construction job and his home, the security he's worked so hard to create for Bella begins to crumble...….

Then a miracle. A job in Raleigh has the power to turn their fortunes around. It has to. But when Travis arrives in Raleigh, there is no job, only an offer to participate in a onetime criminal act that promises quick money and no repercussions.

With nowhere else to turn, Travis must make another choice for his daughter's sake.Even if it means he might lose her.

Characters:

The focus is on four characters; that of Travis, Bella, Robin and Erin, as well as their growth and change in the novel. While the characters have changed, such as Erin attempting to move on in her life from grieving over her daughter Carolyn, the decisions that cause them that change seem very sudden and not really realistic. That is, besides the obvious, what else has caused Robin to do what she has done when it comes to her fiance? It's as if she built up the setting, suspense and characters, but without a warning, The End jumps out, thus I felt a bit cheated and disoriented.

Theme:

What may be seen as disasters can be great gifts in the end

Plot:

I do admit that I enjoyed the built up and daily life of the three main characters of Robin, Travis and Erin, as well as learning about them and seeing them in action, but I felt the novel was predictable (unfortunately) and somehow unrealistic, as well as disorienting. This is written in first person narrative from three characters' points of view. I also felt that Travis sounded a bit, well, feminine. The story also deals with four stories; that of Travis attempting to survive with Bella after their house burns down, of Robin being groomed to be wealthy and letting in the emotions she has closed off when her fiance's sister becomes a single child, and of Erin trying to cope and live after the death of her only child Carolyn, as well as how Robin and Travis met and what has happened between them. The author takes special care in separating the past from the present and there is no confusion but the stories are very clear.

Author Information:
(from goodreads.com)

url
http://www.goodreads.com/DianeChamberlain

born
The United States

gender
female

website
http://www.dianechamberlain.com/

genre
Literature & Fiction, Mystery & Thrillers

member since
July 2008

About this author

I'm the author of 21 novels published in more than eleven languages. I like to write complex stories about relationships between men and women, parents and children, brothers and sisters, and friends. Although the thematic focus of my books often revolves around family, love, compassion and forgiveness, my stories usually feature a combination of suspense, mystery and intrigue.

I live in North Carolina with my significant other, photographer John Pagliuca, and my shelties, Keeper and Jet--the only non-reading members of the household!

Please visit my website and blog. I look forward to seeing you there!

Opinion:

This one had potential of being one of my few five stars novels; the writing is very top notch, the characters are memorable and complex as we walk in their shoes, and the topic is very unique. This is also my very first Diane Chamberlain, and already I desire to read more of her novels. What had reduced this book into a four star category is the middle towards the ending, or at least the part from where she seems to skip the character development of Robin, Travis and Erin, from the time Robin and Travis have met at last. Other than those problems, highly recommendable!

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

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