** The Girls in the Garden by Lisa Jewell

 

The Girls in the Garden features a large number of boys but the story is centered on two sets of sisters who live around a private park in London, one set long-established there and the other having moved recently after their bipolar father burned them out of a house. And it especially centers on their mothers who both fret immensely about their daughters and whose worries will eventually meet in solving a shocking mishap. The plot is nicely twisted and full of potentially bad guys, and it could be an absolute delight, except that the voices of the daughters never sounded quite believable to me. Would a twelve-year old , even a mature twelve year old, write about a fifteen-year old as “you haven’t found out what you are good at, how tall you are going to be or how pretty of if you are going to be rich or poor or happy or sad”. I think not. That was the main problem of the book for me: the kids open their mouths and their mothers’ voices come out.

 

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