Hardcover, 256 pagesExpected publication: July 1st 2014 by HarperTeenSource: Edelweiss
I was blown away by Anderson’s previous novel, Tiger Lily, and if you haven’t read that yet, I urge you to. Apart from the truly intriguing synopsis, The Vanishing Season had going for it my love of the author’s previous novel. So I went into it expecting great things and to an extent, I found it.
But then the ending happened and well. It took me a while to gather my thoughts properly enough to come to a conclusion I could articulate. And well, this book, while I liked parts of it, ultimately, I did not like it.
I really didn’t. I wish I hadn’t read it, that’s how much I didn’t like it.
This doesn’t mean that the book is bad or the writing atrocious. In fact, that is as far from fact as you can get. Let me pull in some theory to help me express the reasons I did not like this book.
Some scholar or the other theorizing about reader-response theory stated that when reading fiction, the author asks the reader to be a certain character, a certain person and if the reader is unable to “become” that person, he or she will have a dissatisfactory response to the book. In other words, the reader will dislike the book.
I cannot even talk about why I did not like the book without giving the story away and that is the point of a review, right? Okay, let’s just say that the justifications given by the author about the way the story unravels is not something I could accept. I get self-sacrifice and all but come on now. No. I hated what happened to the protagonist of the piece and I could not reconcile myself to the climax of the novel and yep, that’s the way things crumbled unfortunately.
However, rather than letting this discourage you from reading this novel, I feel like you, yes you, dear reader of this review, should read the book anyway because I need someone to talk to about all the feels I felt. Maybe you will like the book – it is prettily written with great atmosphere and description. The characters are individuated quite nicely too. It’s just that I disliked the story. Yep.