Unraveling the past.
Generally, the use of flashbacks or alternating chapters by time periods are irritating, annoying and a sign of poor writing. "In Search of Rose Notes," does not fall into the latter in spite of the alternative narratives. The contrast presented are different strands of the story and never get in each others way. The author builds the emotional ties to Nora, the putative narrator, by letting us see her at two times of life, and allows the events of an earlier day come clear as she works through the confusion of the past and teenage angst. A good read.
Rated of 5
by Diana C. (Delray Beach, FL)
A Jewel of a Mystery
If all authors had this gift for character development, every book we read would be a treasured jewel. The obvious draw in this novel is the reader’s ardent desire to find out what happened to Rose, that fateful day. The not-so-obvious draw is the way the author peels away all the layers of the characters, year by year alternating between then and now, keeping us not only engaged but genuinely interested in the ultimate outcome. My favorite book reading genre is historical fiction, but once in a while a mystery comes across my lap that pulls me away from the 17th, 18th or 19th centuries and drops me into a world of intrigue and surprise. If this book had a moral, it would be that sometimes the choices we make have dire consequences.
Rated of 5
by Vera F. (Palmerdale, Alabama)
A Good Read
In Search of the Rose Notes was a very easy to read, compelling story. The action moves from 1990 and back to 2006, but each section is clearly marked and I had no trouble determining when each took place. We meet Nora and Charlotte, who are best friends as children in 1990. Their babysitter after school is Rose, who disappears. This is the mystery that draws them together in as adults. The dialogue for the children, and then for the adults is very realistically rendered. All in all, this was a well-written mystery, if not in the traditional mystery format.
Rated of 5
by Patricia H. (Norman, OK)
High school is more than academic
If your teenage years were perplexing ones, then this novel shows you were not alone. While alternating time frames can be disconcerting in some novels, they help support who these characters were and have become. It is a tough book because it has not been a happy time for them and, in the end, it is not clear that the solving the mystery of Rose's disappearance will make a difference. A melancholy book but worth reading if you want to share the lives of your novel's charaters from either the adult or teen perspective. I would recommend the book and would read it again.
Rated of 5
by Diane C. (Lutz, FL)
Claiming the truth
The friendship between Nora and Charlotte began on the first day of kindergarten, and by the time the girls are eleven they have developed a mutual history that lacks mutual respect. At least that is the viewpoint of Nora, who narrates this story that twists between three points in time. We meet the girls when they are eleven and bedazzled by Rose, an older high school girl who babysits them after school. One night, after walking Nora home, Rose disappears without a trace. In 2006, Charlotte calls Nora, who is now happily married and long gone from her hometown, to tell her that Rose's bones have been found. Keys to the disintegration of the girls' friendship, the trauma of Rose's disappearance, and Nora's suicidal breakdown, however, are buried in the experiences of 2006, when Charlotte and Nora are in high school. Clues and red herring are scattered throughout Nora's telling, and the reader is never sure if Nora is revealing the truth or her own fears and fantasies. It's an engrossing and suspenseful symphony. Fans of psychological mysteries should like this one.
Rated of 5
by Cathleen K. (Poughkeepsie, NY)
In Search of the Rose Notes, by Emily Arsenault
In reading this book, I felt I was reading a Nancy Drew for grownups. It involves the lives of two young girls and the mysterious death of their babysitter. As they progress from pre-teen to older teen to young women, their lives change, profoundly influenced by their traumatic experience and by their early interest in the occult. It isn’t until they reunite much later that many questions are answered. We learn of the changes, both inward and outward, through the narrator, Nora. The book was a fast read, interesting, and hard to put down. I would recommend it especially for teens and young adults, though people of all ages might find it enjoyable.
Rated of 5
by Deborah D. (Newark, CA)
A Good Summer Read
In Search of the Rose Notes is reminiscent of other psychological mysteries (think Carol Goodman). The enjoyment comes through the intermingling of good characters with the tragedy they are all coming to grips with. Nora returns home to discover her small town isn't nearly as smothering and awful as she once believed. At the same time, she must address old childhood and high school relationships while trying to find the answers to a mysterious murder. Good character development and an interesting twist make this book a worthwhile summer read.
British Parliament asks Amazon to clarify why it pays $9 million in income tax on $23 billion of UK sales.(May 20 2013) Amazon will be called back to give further evidence to members of the British Parliament "to clarify how its activities in the U.K. justify its low corporate...