Reader reviews and comments on The Guest Book, plus links to write your own review.

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The Guest Book

by Sarah Blake

The Guest Book by Sarah Blake X
The Guest Book by Sarah Blake
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  • Published:
    May 2019, 448 pages

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Power Reviewer
Nikki M. (Fort Wayne, IN)

A bit disappointing...
I was excited to receive an early access copy of this one, but it just didn't quite live up to the hype for me. I think sometimes you anticipate a great book, and then your expectations are unrealistically high. That usually leads to disappointment, which is what happened in this case.

Other reviewers loved it, so take my opinion with a grain of salt!
Judi R. (Jericho, NY)

Long Family Saga
The Guest Book was an ambitious undertaking by the author, Sarah Blake. It is a family saga spanning three generations in the early 1900s. There were many threads covering multiple chronologies told in alternating narrative voices. Blake has a lot of confidence in her readers' abilities to follow these threads and piece together hints and clues throughout the chapters.
What I liked: The writing is beautiful, poetic and descriptive. I enjoy historical fiction as a genre and especially like family sagas. Blake touches on the anti-Semitic and racist feelings among the elite upper crust society of this day in a poignant and aching way. This has relevance in today's culture as well. Many lessons to be learned.
What I didn't like: This book is too long. It got bogged down in too much minutiae. There are several characters named after relatives and sometimes it was confusing trying to figure out the timeline and narrator. The book could benefit from a family tree graphic, possibly making one available on a website. The chapters could be headed with a date or some other reference. Several details, although significant to the plot were so slightly developed that they could have been missed entirely by the reader. Some threads seemed to go nowhere, leaving some conclusions to the readers' imaginations.
That said, I was compelled to finish. I cared about the characters. Some I really liked. Some I really disliked, but I needed to know their stories. The author had some important points to make. The threads twisted and several remained unraveled in the end. I just wish the book could have been a little tighter and focused more on fewer story lines.

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The Guest Book
by Sarah Blake

"An American epic in the truest sense…"
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