Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Child Finder by Rene Denfeld

The Child Finder (Naomi Cottle, #1)The Child Finder by Rene Denfeld
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Warning: review contains minor spoilers.

I have always avoided books about child abuse and paedophilia, because I know it’s a subject matter I cannot handle. Not even in books. I had no idea The Child Finder would go into such details and wish it had been made clear in the description, but that’s not the reason for my low rating. Once the scenes of child abuse began I could stop reading, no one was holding a gun to my head, but I persevered, because I wanted to see the end, to see how that sonofabitch got what he deserved.

But reading this book felt like a slow torture. Being such a short read it moved so slowly that once I reached the 50% point I skipped to the last 10%. I hate skipping books, but recently all I’ve been doing is skipping books.

My problem was that there was nothing new in this book. The protagonist, Naomi, was yet another PI with a dark past, who did the job better than a whole PD, and who was antisocial and didn’t trust anyone, but was so alluring, mysterious, and captivating, that everyone was momentarily smitten away by her.

I didn’t find it believable that Naomi had such a high success rate of finding lost children, because all she did in the first half of the book was walking around, talking to people, and roaming the woods. Her accomplishments were based on pure luck.
Also, the characters were not a bit believable. Everyone’s behavior was amateur, everyone spoke like they all were from a Daytime Soap.

Now the kidnapped child. I yet have to see a 5 y.o. girl behave the way Madison did in the book. Near the end she was badly beaten up by her abuser, but next day when the investigator finds her, the girl is described as “bruised and dirty.” After such a beating I expected an 8 y.o. to end up in a coma, not just be bruised and dirty. And she had even managed to open the lock with an old, rusted spoon. If a 40 y.o. man beats up a girl the way it was described in the book, she wouldn’t have a healthy spot on her body.
And after she’s saved, the girl isn’t hospitalized, isn’t in care of psychologists, she’s at home, drawing. A 5 y.o. girl goes missing, three years pass, she’s found, she recognizes her parents immediately and she’s at home, drawing. I’ve been a lawyer for 13 years. This doesn’t happen, sadly.

The writing wasn’t great either. Sometimes I finish the book I don’t like because the writing is superb, like in “The Thirteenth Tale”. Here, it was not. “He looked away, and she could see the reflection of trees in his eyes.” How’s that even possible? And the POV shifts were distracting.

One more thing. If you give someone a nickname in Spanish, you don’t have to use the “la” article. Naomi wouldn’t be called “la reina” by her Mexican friend. It’s like nicknaming your friend “queen” then saying, “Hello, a queen.”

Usually I don’t write such long reviews, but I needed to rant a bit, lol. It happens when I’m angry with a book. Obviously a lot of readers have loved this book and it’s great. We all look for something special in a story. I just didn’t find it in this one, but I’ll keep searching.

View all my reviews

No comments:

Post a Comment