Plot: While the plot has interesting elements, so many different elements seem to be competing for the center stage: There is the front story of the relic and Alice, then her relationship with her husband and her secret pregnancy, then the backstory of his family. While it does coalesce, overall it still feels a bit too widespread to truly come together. Readers might have a difficult time parsing out the key elements of the narrative.
Prose/Style: The prose is a bit old-fashioned, even twee at times, which rubbed the wrong way. It almost sounded older than it needed to be, and while it’s certainly trying to emulate a time period, readers might be too distracted by the antiquated language to really get invested in the characters and plot.
Originality: This is definitely an original story for most readers today, thanks to the narration; that said, it does introduce questions into the plot that are distracting, such as how the narrator knew all of the information and backstory they did, and why exactly such large portions of each section were dedicated to sharing it.
Character Development: The characters in this story could use some more dimension to be believable - this could be due to the detached narration (characters are repeatedly introduced as “the man” or “the woman,” which makes it difficult to connect or picture them), or their dialogue, which often feels forced.
Date Submitted: May 10, 2019
This book is good and enjoyable to read! I’m amazed that this is the author’s first book. She writes eloquently and almost poetically. I enjoyed the storyline and the stories within stories. The author has a depth and understanding in her writing that is compelling. I can’t wait to see what she does next. Brava!
As the author’s first offering, I was amazed at her ability to write comfortable, easy-to-read dialogue, a difficult task. The complexity of the storyline(s) kept my attention and propelled me forward, compelling me to continue reading, even as other tasks called my name :). I will say, the storylines are a bit dark for my taste but otherwise, The Relic is an engrossing read.
Very interesting read! I love that there are a lot of stories within the story. I enjoy historical fiction and suggest checking this out if you do as well. I also love how the author provided historical notes @ the end of the book as well.
One of the most mysterious, dark, and interesting books I’ve ever read! I could not put it down! I am still beyond amazed that this is her first piece of work. I read another review commenting her writing was almost poetic, and I definitely agree. I can’t wait to see what she does next!
I have to say that I absolutely love a good dark mystery that has a solid plot. I loved the fact that I couldn’t guess as to what the ending would be. So many novels are so predictable! I really liked the fact that her descriptions of places and people were just enough that you could visualize what was taking place at that moment. I’ve read so many books that the author spends so much time describing the people and surroundings that I completely lose interest. I will have to agree with the other readers in saying that it has defiantly piqued my curiosity of my family lineage!!!! Anyone that likes a dark novel and has interest in curses and history you will love this book. I will also say that I’m shocked that this is Ms. Holly’s first novel. She wrote this book as if she had been writing for a hundred years. I’m looking forward to seeing what she writes next!
Wow! For a first time author, this was excellent reading! Wait, this would be an excellent book for an experienced author! I was fascinated with the history of the South I had never heard linked in this manner. Holly chose to go back to centuries not worn out with Civil War stories. Bringing out the stories of strong, albeit sometimes lunatic, women, is very apropros to current events in our nation today. Holly inspired me to delve deeper into my genealogy to discover what I can about my history! Can't wait to see what comes next from Holly!