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Thursday, 16 October 2014
Buy or Borrow: Borrow
Source: Copy courtesy of the Publisher
After enduring her father's cruelty for years, Polly, her brother Ben and her mother decide to flee in the night after it all becomes too much, but Polly accidentally sets the house on fire, killing her father. Left with the Shakers by their mother, Polly and her brother are told to forget all familial ties, her brother soon becomes brainwashed to the groups ways and Polly, while she does make a friend, can't seem to fit in. Meanwhile, a fire investigator is searching for Polly and her mother to settle the problem of what should be done about the property, unraveling the mysteries of the fire and the past.
I asked to review this because I was intrigued, I love a bit of history, and I'd never heard of the Shakers so I was curious to know more, and excited to pick up the book and learn more about this community.
The Visionist doesn't scrimp on details, I feel I could write an essay on the Shakers and their ways and beliefs, I found out so much from reading the book. Men and women are kept separate, for instance, and I learned a lot about their clothing and the food they ate and how they keep the community going.
Polly herself took on an interesting role in the community, as the Visionist, someone who sees and feels angels and has "visions"....obviously. Polly is obviously keeping a very big secret, and soon finds out she's pregnant. Polly doesn't have the best time at the community once Charity, her friend turns on her. While I did feel for Polly, one of the problems with the book was that I felt like I didn't get to know Polly or even Charity, very well, I felt no connection to either of the girls, and to be honest, I didn't have a very high opinion of Charity towards the end of the book.
I've given this three stars, not only because of that, but because while the book was entertaining and full of knowledge and had plenty of intrigue, the pace was very slow, and never picked up. Even when the net was closing and all the action at the end of the book was happening, the pace stayed the same. I also felt like, while I was intrigued by all the information, I was at times, quite bored.