Release Date: 04/01/13
In the 1940s, Coden, Alabama, was a hideaway for movie stars - an isolated playground tucked among live oaks and placid bay waters where pleasure and vice could be indulged. By the summer of 1974 Coden's glamour has faded, but it doesn't bother Mimi Bosarge, who is just happy to have a job as a live-in tutor with the wealthiest family in town, the Hendersons. When the Hendersons generously open their arms to Annie, a troubled teenager with no recollection of her past, Mimi's greatest concern is creating a curriculum for the family's new ward.But it soon becomes obvious that something is wrong. Annie seems suspiciously savvy for her young age, and Mimi can't quell the unnerving sense that there is something malicious about the waif-like beauty.
My thoughts on the book:
The Darkling had the recipe for a successful thriller/mystery type novel, but fell short for me in many ways. The pacing lagged, the plot was predictable, and the characters annoyed me. The writing itself is good, but the rest of the book is pretty bad. I would recommend checking this one out from the library before you buy it.
Mimi is obnoxious and a bit too passive for my tastes. She just doesn't assert herself nearly enough. She thinks a lot of things, but she doesn't really do enough, in my opinion. Annie is obviously creepy and obnoxious, and I couldn't stand her. Margot gets on my nerves until she disappears because she is such a brat... you get the idea. Everyone was just annoying in some fashion.
The plot could have been good, but it is so repetitive and the pacing is so slow that I just couldn't get into it. The writing drew me in, and Chesterton has some good descriptions, but I felt the world-building was lacking and the plotting was off. Chesterton overdoes the tension aspect, and in doing so basically repeats the same "intense and mysterious" scenes constantly in an effort to keep the reader interested. Because of this, it felt like the story didn't progress much, or at all, for long periods of time, which led to me getting SO FREAKING BORED. Also, I got so annoyed with the tension-building parts that I didn't even care what happened by the end. I just wanted to finish it.
As I said, if the synopsis of the book interests you, check it out from the library first.