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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Girl on Legare Street

White, Karen.  The Girl on Legare Street.

A sequel to The House on Tradd Street (which I haven't read), this review copy arrived last week. Melanie Middleton is a realtor in Charleston who is busy restoring the historic house she inherited on Tradd Street when the mother who abandoned her when she was 7 appears on the scene.  Both mother and daughter share psychic abilities, but Melanie's resentment and sense of betrayal keeps her from welcoming the mother who left her over 30 years ago.

Jack Trenholme from The House on Tradd Street provides the romantic angle, and he and Melanie spar repeatedly as she denies her attraction to him.  There is a protective ghost and a vengeful ghost, some curious paintings from the late 19th century depicting young girls wearing identical lockets, a female reporter who has an odd sense of familiarity and an intense interest in the house on Legare Street and its occupants present and past.

Characterization is either lacking or stereotypical and the supernatural plot requires a great deal of "suspension of disbelief."  The book seems to fall in the chic lit/romance/paranormal realm with plenty of elements from each sub-genre. The author believes in "tell don't show" and is afraid you might miss her intentions, so repeats them frequently.

I did like it better White's The Lost Hours, but once again hoped for more.  On the other hand, it is a fast read and all the other blog reviews I read were highly enthusiastic.

Fiction.  Supernatural/Romance.  2009.  335 pages


  1. Sounds a little - predictable? I've been wondering whether to try Karen White, but I might after all give her a miss...

  2. I just read The House on Tradd Street and I enjoyed it but I had to forgive a lot in the middle. I was hoping that this be would be better.

  3. Too, too funny. I just read a review of the "Tradd Street" book an hour or so ago, online, and put it on hold! How funny to see someone talking about the sequel. I have a couple fiction books going on (and two on hold at the library!) but am also really enjoying a non-fiction book on what happens after you win the Nobel Prize. The book is Reindeer With King Gustaf by Anita Laughlin, whose husband Bob won the big prize in 1998. Such a great description of all the hoopla that follows, and the mad dash to Stockholm and all the ceremonies. She really has an eye for detail -- and even talks about the "proper Nobel bow," which I found interesting just because Obama's bow to the Japanese leader was in the news last week. Hope Obama practices his Nobel bow --he's going to need it! He not only has to bow, he has to hold things at the same time, and the bow is timed to music.

  4. I've just started Tradd St. I'm loving it so far.

  5. Jenny - Give her a try--most reviews are positive! Sometimes I a little curmudgeonly. :0

    Nicole - If you enjoyed The House on Tradd Street, you may like this one. It is a quick read, and it kept me interested enough to read the entire thing, even if I couldn't get deeply involved.

    Liz - I've read a positive review about Reindeer with King Gustaf somewhere else a few months ago; thanks for reminding me!

    Beth F - I actually think I'd have enjoyed Tradd Street better than this one. I do love old houses and ghosties!

  6. This is on its way in the mail, and I plan to read it after Christmas! I really enjoyed Tradd Street.

    I'll be back to read your review after I read the book.

  7. I read The House on Tradd Street last year and enjoyed it. Not great, but good. I think I might have enjoyed it more had I been expecting that chicklit feel to it. I plan to read The Girl on Legare Street soon and am going in with much more realistic expectations.

  8. Nan - Hope you enjoy this one as much as the first one!

    LF - Hope you, too, enjoy this one as much as the first! Seems loved The House on Tradd Street.

  9. I actually have this one checked out from the library right now. :)

    I read and enjoyed The House on Tradd Street - it was a bit of fluff reading but entertaining. I don't typically read light romance/paranormal books but I felt like she did a good job of balancing the two.

    I wonder what I'll think of this one!

    Sorry it didn't cut it for you - oh well, they can't all be winners for everyone, right? :)

  10. OK, update: I have forced myself through the first 30 pages and just can't take it anymore. The mother is insufferable and the way Melanie's supposed friends are acting towards her mother is unbearable! If my mother had disappeared from my life for 33 years and she came back acting as though nothing had happened, strong-armed my employer into forcing me to work with her AND had all my friends fawning over her AND acting like I was the unreasonable one, I'd be furious, too! I just couldn't take the idea of having to put up with that for another 200 pages, so I returned it to the library unfinished.

    OK, I feel a little better having gotten that out of my system.