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I read a few reviews before I downloaded this book and some were so against it, I almost didn't get it. But I took a chance and downloaded because there were many good reviews too. This book was very good. I thought the narrators did a great a job, the plot was good, the twists were drawn out and good so you didn't see them coming. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of Law and Order SVU, NCIS, CSI, Gone Girl (or anything by Gillian Flynn really). The main character was so easy to side with and you really felt all that she thought of every character. Give the book a try, some parts might make you queasy but you can always skip 30 seconds ahead and it's usually over by then. I loved this book and I could definitely listen to it again.
17 of 18 people found this review helpful
What a waste of a brilliantly twisted idea. There wasn't a moment of this story I enjoyed. The writing is lazy and cumbersome, so much telling and so little showing and feeling. The characters are incredibly under developed, and there are so many names of girls that are mentioned with such little effort of having them mean anything.
The plot summary of this book is the best part. Don't bother reading it. There are no compelling characters to hope for, no plot twists to shock you, no passages that will haunt you.
The highly rated narrators do nothing to help this book. The male voice sounds nice, but made it impossible to distinguish between the two male detectives and his inflections for the girl made her sound like an irritating snob.
20 of 23 people found this review helpful
It was hard to stop listening, despite the dark twisted nature of the story. The main character is likeable and she draws you in to her life story, I respected her strength and attitude having suffered the way she has. However, throughout listening you feel as though you are constantly waiting for something, a twist or a turn ... that never comes. The ending is really disappointing and silly, it discredited the rest of the book for me. Because of the ending I lost interest and won't be listening to Dot Hutchinson's follow on book.
32 of 33 people found this review helpful
Fascinating, intriguing, gentle and brutal. An hypnotic Danse Macabre that genuinely surprised me. They say never judge a book by its cover and well in this case you should beware the innocent sounding title as well! Hidden behind it is as twisted a story as you’re ever likely to read. There is insanity, brutality and the extinction of hope yet the quality of the writing within and the ultra-smooth delivery of Lauren Ezzo lead you on an almost surreally tranquil journey through the story's stark landscape.
The book is structured around an interview of one of the survivors of the garden. It’s a clever device which actually works better than I expected and gives the book a good rhythm without disrupting the flow. Foster’s gruffness provides a growling counterpoint to the smooth narrative sections from within the garden. There are some lighter, very human moments as the relationship between the FBI agents and the girl develops. There are also some surprisingly gentle interactions within the beautiful yet horrific world created by The Gardener.
For all those gentle touches though this book deals with the disturbing including moments of extreme cruelty. It really is no light holiday fiction for all the delicateness of its title and moments of genuine humanity. What it is, is a darnn good read though. If you have the fortitude to enter these dark places and appreciate the good writing you find when you get in there then you’ll find this a genuine treat from Dot Hutchison.
39 of 43 people found this review helpful