B2 Reading Multiple Matching Exam 7
(A) Sundance by Teresa Wilson
I really don't know why this book is so popular. I mean, I suppose it is going to appeal to young girls who want danger and romance, but I found this book really tedious. For a start, the characters were really unconvincing. The author went out of her way to add lots of details about the characters, but I found these details really pointless. I thought that some of the facts she presented about the main characters would become significant in some way later in the novel, but they didn't. They were just worthless bits of information. I also was disappointed that, although this book is meant to be about kids at high school, the writer seems to have no recollection at all about what it's like to be 17. The main character thought and acted like a 32-year old. It just wasn't believable. I'm not saying Teresa Wilson is a bad writer. She can obviously string words together and come up with a story that is appealing to a large number of people, but she lacks anything original. There is no flair. It just uses the same sort of language as you can see in many other mediocre novels.
(B) Wild Ways by Margery Emerson
I have to say that I won't forget this book for a long time. I was hooked from the very first chapter. The devastating story affected me so much that I don't know if I'll ever feel the same again. I was close to tears on several occasions. I've got images in my brain now that I don't think will ever leave me. It's incredibly well-researched and, although it is fiction, is based on shocking real-life events. I learned an awful lot about things that went on that I never knew before. Margaret Emerson has a brilliant way with words and I really felt real empathy towards the characters, although I was sometimes irritated by the choices they made. However, the parallel story, the part that is set in the present, is not quite so good. I found myself just flicking through that part so that I could get back to 1940s Paris.
(C) Orchid by Henry Rathbone
This is a delightful novel full of wonderful imagery, a paints a remarkable picture of life in a distant time and a far-away place. If you're looking to learn about Eastern culture in great detail, then this is probably not the book for you, as the writer skims over most of the more complicated aspects of the country's etiquette. The historical aspects are also not covered in much depth. However, I wonder whether this was the writer's intention. By doing this, he symbolises the superficiality of the girl's life. She, like the book, is beautiful and eager to please, but remains too distant from us, the readers, to teach us much. Although I loved the book and read it in one sitting, the ending was a bit of a disappointment. A story which involves so much turmoil, in a place where the future is uncertain, should not have a happy-ever-after fairy-tale ending.
(D) High Hills by Mary Holland
I read this book for a literature class. I know it's a classic, and I did try to like it, but I just didn't get into it. I kept persevering, hoping that I'd start to enjoy it, but no such luck. The famous scene out on the moors was definitely the best bit of the book, but even that I found ridiculous when it is clearly supposed to be passionate. As I approached the end of the book, I figured there must be some kind of moral to the story, something that I would learn from the experience of trudging through seven hundred long pages, but there was nothing worthwhile. I don't know why the literary world sees this book as such a masterpiece. The characters are portrayed as being intelligent, but they do such stupid things! And as for it being a love story - marrying someone you don't love and then being abused by them - that doesn't spell love to me.