Thursday, 11 November 2010

Books....Billie Girl

This novel by Vickie Weaver is desribed on the back as

Southern Gothic, dark humor and human sexuality, wrapped up in the theme of mercy killing :Billie Girl, b. 1900

I loved the start of the book, the description of how Billie, a baby who just won't stop crying, ends up being looked after by her two Moms. And then......well, it just didn't work for me. I am not always interested in the stories of the supporting cast, but in this novel there is something very unusual about Billie's adoptive parents. It is finally mentioned in the text and then, nothing. Now, it's pretty unusual and I am left with a WTF? feeling when there is absolutely no back story attatched. The book then meanders through Billie's life with a few rather odd bits thrown in, such as a graphic description of how to deal with menstrual cramps. Again, I was left somewhat bemused by this inclusion. OK, the blurb does mention human sexuality, but it doesn't feel like an exploration of said sexuality to me. Rather, it feels as if the author has suddenly remembered to put something of that ilk in and just rams the text wherever it (doesn't ) fit. I could ramble on, but I won't.

I feel like I have been very harsh about this book, and I wish I could have said lots of great things about it, but I can't. However, in this case it is probably down to personal taste, perhaps, rather than anything terminally wrong with the book. Unlike some prizewinners, I wouldn't be amazed if other people did enjoy this book. It held enough promise for me that I would have a go with another book by this author, if I get my hands on one.

Scores on the door...5 out of 10

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