The Beginners by Rebecca Wolff
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
*Some Spoilers contained* Well, I finished it. It was almost painful to do so at times, but I plowed through. There was a lot of potential with the story line and with the actual characters, but the majority of a time, I felt like I was listening to someone relate their dream after they'd been awake for a few hours and they kept forgetting the point of the dream.
Cherry and Ginger are high schoolers in a small, idyllic Massachusetts town, caught between being kids who play make-believe all day and women who are interested in sexual relationships and social structures. A mysterious couple comes to town (Raquel and Theo) who take an interest in them and they are suddenly enveloped by these strangers. When Cherry starts to recognize that they're not healthy people to be around, Ginger continues to become more and more enmeshed in their dysfunction and so the story goes.
There was one point, about 200 or so pages in, when Theo makes a confession about their true 'story' and I actually said out loud 'What?!' because I didn't see it coming. However, Wolff did not take the opportunity then to use that plot twist and move the story forward. To the end, I kept waiting for a great twist or for something to finally click into place but it just didn't.
She definitely has a great handle on use of language, it's poetic (duh, she's a poet, right?) but there were so many holes in the story that had to be filled in. I feel like I have a pretty good imagination, but there were times I had to re-read a page thinking I'd missed something-nope.
I closed the book and wanted to fling it because I was annoyed that I plowed on for virtually nothing. As my History professor once said on a paper that clearly needed more fleshing out '...if you ever again make me slog through seven pages, there had BETTER be a point.'
View all my reviews