I tried. I really did. I gave it a valiant effort. I made it almost halfway through. If I had finished all of it, it might have garnered a 2 at most – but because I couldn't finish it, it's got to be a one out of five.
This book was so boring it repeatedly had me falling asleep while reading. I honestly just didn't care for Ms. Bray's writing style. It felt like she was trying to write for TV or movie – telling us what was happening with wind – birds flying away – anything, it seems – to make it longer. I'm not even sure how much of what I read was necessary or relevant to the story.
She frequently switched perspectives – often in the middle of a chapter for only a paragraph. It made the book feel disjointed and more like she planned for it to be a TV mini-series, written more from camera angles than from a novelists perspective. As a film school graduate – I've written enough scripts and Diviners felt like it should begin with “INT – MANOR – EVENING”
While Ms. Bray clearly did an exorberant amount of research on the 1920's and life in New York at that time, it felt like she wanted to include all of it. All of that research, every other sentence – something else I didn't understand and either had to look up or pushed on without really knowing what she meant.
The phrases were one thing – “The Elephants Ears”, etc. that was all fine...to a point. However, her need to include absolutely everything she's ever learned about the 20's got old – very quickly. Really, it's all in the 20's – see? The 20's. Oh look, we're in the 20's! Did you forget for a sentence that this takes place in the 20's? Cause' it does.
I was at first confused by the sudden change in perspectives, focusing on Memphis. Who'sa whatsit now? I thought Evie was the heroin of this tale? Nope. Just one of the main characters, it turns out. Confusing at first – then it just became annoying to read part of one story and then suddenly switch to another.
I think I'm in the lesser percentile on the review of this book, as most people seem to pos-i-tutely love it. I just didn't. I need to read a different book now, and stop dreading the reading of this one.