Plot: Book three in the Euphemia series, Empty Nest, keeps the reader interested as they read about a lonely corner of New Zealand. Perhaps what Rosy Fenwicke does best is write about an often overlooked and underestimated group - middle-aged women.
Prose: Fenwicke's prose is easy to follow, and paints a clear image of the bucolic, quiet countryside. She has an aptitude for writing about beautiful, yet morose, areas, and everything within the novel feels a touch sinister. Occasionally jumpy storytelling would benefit from additional smoothing over.
Originality: Empty Nest stands apart through its focus on an oft-ignored demographic and a unique, vividly portrayed location.
Character/Execution: Euphemia, as the main character, is the most sympathetic character in the book. While some interactions throughout the novel can feel somewhat stilted, Fenwicke represents the complicated inner world of the characters well, diving into their insecurities, desires, wants, and needs. Eschewing standard matriarchs in maternal roles, Fenwicke features women with a wide range of personalities, emotions, and egos.
Date Submitted: April 04, 2022