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Like other reviewers, I loved Willig's first three books. It's a bit of a mystery why in this book she lavishes so much energy on a main character who is so lacking in redeeming qualities. Willig has been producing books at a suspiciously rapid rate over the past several years, but the problem with this book doesn't seem to be haste or laziness on her part. It's more like she's forgotten what attracts readers to books: great characters who we care care about having larger-than-life adventures.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
I finished this audiobook reluctantly. The mystery/espionage plot is pretty much non-existent. For 3/4 of the book we just get the tale of the "heroine", Penelope. Rarely have I encountered such a totally unattractive character. Penelope's back-story doesn't justify her lack of development and growth or make her at all sympathetic. She is petulant, childish, selfish, egocentric, mean spirited and altogether a nasty girl. Frankly, I don't know why the hero bothers. It appears the author thinks we should admire this woman because of her bravado and impetuousness or feel sorry for her because she had a difficult childhood and dislikes herself. Frankly, I just wanted to kick Penelope and tell her to go grow up. That really doesn't happen, even during the predictable self-excoriation that Penelope inflicts on herself after her husband's death -- which is still all about her. I suppose one would say that the book is well written, since the lead character is certainly vividly drawn. But why should we care? Most of the book is spent regaling us with way this woman ignores the feelings and concerns of everyone around her. This is frankly boring and irritating. The mystery that Penelope and Alex are supposedly trying to unravel is secondary. The Betrayal of the Blood Lily is a real disappointment in light of Lauren Willig's previous work.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful