Wow. I was completely stunned to find out today that Book Chick City has given THE TROUPE a huge 5 star review.
It is almost impossible to adequately describe THE TROUPE without giving too much away. This is a novel that is bleak yet heartwarming, gruesome yet loving, full of hope yet burdened with despair. In the final chapters there is a myriad of emotions that grow through the pages that it takes at least a second read through to thoroughly appreciate Bennett’s message.
This novel was a surprise as I wasn’t expecting it to be as harrowing as it was. The final chapters were so gruesome they were borderline horror and as the reader you weren’t really sure what was happening or how the story was going to play out. I was certain there wasn’t going to be a truly happy ending and had this happened I would have felt cheated. THE TROUPE is a love story but not like any other love story I have ever read as the love is steeped in grief and betrayal. THE TROUPE isn’t for the feint hearted, but for those who want a truly spectacular and mind blowing read I highly recommend it.
Very good things indeed.
I suppose the reason I’m so stunned is that, back when Mr. Shivers came out a whole – what, three years ago? More? Jesus. – Book Chick City’s review was the first bad review I ever got in my career as an author.
I honestly don’t dispute the review, nor do I harbor any ill will about it, since I did not and do not think the book was or is their type of thing – it’s a nasty, spare, dark book that moves quite slowly – but I don’t think authors ever really forget their first reviews, good or bad, justified or unjustified. (Well, justification doesn’t honestly have place in an assessment of a review – a review is a snapshot of how someone feels about a thing. You don’t have to justify it, really. You feel how you feel.)
Anyways, while it’s not the same reviewer as I first got at Book Chick City, I’ve been saying for a while that I think THE TROUPE is quite a bit different from everything I’ve ever done before, and it’s nice to get a suggestion that I’m right about that. Her assessment of the book is exactly what I was trying to accomplish. So while it’s most excellent to see a good review, it’s even better to hear in the review that they received the message you were trying to broadcast.