A Definitely Not Spoiler-Free Review: Come This Way by Michelle Schlicher 

Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction

Pages: 362 (ebook)

Release Date: 21 October 2016

My rating: 2.75/5 stars

Goodreads synopsis

A hiking and outdoor enthusiast, fifty-year-old Fern Conrad can’t imagine spending her time doing anything else, much to the dismay of her daughter, Colby. 

Kara Dawson, a twenty-five-year-old student therapist, has shut life out to focus on her sister’s illness. That is, until a chance meeting pushes her to confront the possibilities—by letting go and moving forward.
Eighty-three-year-old Nettie Campbell heals in the hospital while facing the consequences of her actions. Can she repair relationships and forge new bonds as she comes to terms with the truth?
Come This Way is an emotional, honest look into the lives of women who are discovering their own strength. It is a story about difficult choices and the people around us who help us find our way.

Come This Way  is a contemporary novel that explore the stories of three sets of women, with each chapter alternating between these women. In the first chapter, we meet Fern and Colby, a mother-daughter duo who are seemingly complete opposites, but discover during their time stranded on a hike that they are more alike than they originally thought. Next, we are introduced to Kara, a young woman who has spent more of the last two years taking care of her ill twin sister than living the life of a typical twenty-something. And finally, we meet the stubborn and feisty Nettie, an 83-year-old woman who is still learning how to live her life without her beloved husband Richard. While seemingly completely separate, these women’s stories become intertwined near the end.

Now, I don’t normally read women’s contemporary lit (unless you count my  recent Colleen Hoover obsession), so I don’t have much of a frame of reference for this genre. I will say, however, that I went into this book with the idea that I would be reading a nice, heartwarming novel à la my girl Colleen Hoover. Unfortunately, this book did not leave me with very many pleasant feelings. This isn’t to say that I felt any disdain for the characters; more so that I didn’t feel anything for them. The characters were quite flat and their storylines were not well fleshed out.

When I pick up a contemporary novel, I expect to feel A LOT of things; I mean, I want to feel ALL the feels. I want to have deep connections with the characters and feel more like a participant in the story rather than a distant voyeur. In this case, I was certainly more of the latter. I found myself rolling my eyes a few times when reading, especially at how quickly Kara’s love interest, Eric, decides he’s head over heels about her. Now, maybe I’m a bit of a sceptic and a tad bit jaded, but I didn’t find their relationship to be organic or realistic; who can fall in love that quickly?!

When Kara loses her twin sister Kate to cancer, I felt nothing. Now, before you call me callous, I am a sucker for tragic moments in books (The Fault in Our Stars, anyone?) and these moments normally tear me apart. In this case, the dialogue and plot setup did not evoke such feelings from me. I didn’t empathise with Fern and Colby while they were lost during their hike for days-I didn’t feel the grit and rawness that would normally come with such a traumatic event. I felt as though the intertwining of the three sets of stories at the end was done in such a haphazard manner that it almost felt as though this was an afterthought; something that was done so that each of the women’s stories didn’t seem so random and left-field.

I wanted so badly to like this novel-after recently finishing Six of Crows (review to come soon!), I was in the mood for a book of this genre. Sadly, this book did not intrigue me. I even found myself skimming the last 50 pages or so, just so I could finish. This book had SUCH great potential, but never fully realised it. I think more attention needed to be paid to exploring the characters’ realism, with a desperate need for the removal of random, extraneous detail that popped up in between sets of dialogue.

Have you all ever read a book that disappointed you? What didn’t you like about it?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Later, bookworms ✌🏼

-K

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One thought on “A Definitely Not Spoiler-Free Review: Come This Way by Michelle Schlicher 

  1. Pingback: October Wrap-Up – K The Ravenous Reader

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