TLC Book Tour: In Search of the Rose Notes

In Search of the Rose Notes

Emily Arsenault

William Morrow Paperbacks

384 pages

Charlotte and Nora are best friends by the time the 90s role around.  They spend their afternoons at Charlotte’s house being watched by a high school girl named Rose.  They look up to Rose and enjoy their time with her because she treats them as peers instead of little kids. Together, the three girls wile away their time during the summer of 1990, filled with curiosity and mischief.  Their bond slowly begins to break down as summer turns to fall, culminating with Rose’s disappearance in November of that year.

Charlotte and Nora both grieve over the loss of their friend and mentor.  Immediately, they attempt any wacky scheme they can imagine in order to determine Rose’s whereabouts, even going so far as to steal Rose’s family cat in the hope that the senile animal will give them a clue.

Eventually Rose’s memory and disappearance begin to fade, and although both girls will always be shaped by her absence, they both move on with their lives.  The rift that had begun before Rose’s disappearance only widens, and eventually the girls lose contact with one another.

Fast forward to 2006.  Charlotte calls Nora out of the blue after Rose’s body is finally discovered.  Nora agree to travel back to her hometown and ends up staying with Charlotte for a week as the story behind Rose’s death unfolds.

I will say one thing for In Search of the Rose Notes; it was readable. I picked it up one night and ended up reading over 100 pages before finally being overcome by sleep.  The more I read though, the more the mystery seemed to take a back seat, as Nora’s issues take the forefront, including the disintegration of her friendship with Charlotte.  I would have appreciated a little more suspense.

I also had an issue with Nora’s husband Neil.  It seemed like their relationship would play a bigger role in the book.  Once Nora goes back to her old hometown, she is running into men that had an impact on her when she was younger.  I started to wonder if this was going to be part love story, part mystery, but everything dealing with Neil seemed to peter out, and Arsenault’s attempts to draw him into the story seemed disingenuous.

I thought In Search of the Rose Notes to be a valid attempt, but  there were a few key elements missing that made it fall a bit flat to me.

About Emily Arsenault

Emily Arsenault is the critically acclaimed author of The Broken Teaglass, a New York Times 2009 Notable Mystery. She lives in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts.

Visit Emily at her website.

Emily’s Tour Stops

Tuesday, July 26: Sarah Reads Too Much

Tuesday, July 26: Reflections of a Bookaholic

Wednesday, July 27: My Reading Room

Friday, July 29: Reviews from the Heart

Monday, August 1: Life In Review

Thursday, August 4: Reading Lark

Monday, August 8: The Whimsical Cottage

Tuesday, August 9: Chaotic Compendiums

Wednesday, August 10: A Bookworm’s World

Friday, August 12: Cozy Little House

Monday, August 15: Reviews By Lola

Friday, August 19: “That’s Swell!”

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review.

**I have a copy of this book to give away to one reader.  If you are interested, please include your e-mail address in the comments section.  I will choose a winner randomly next week.  This contest is only open to US mailing addresses.

10 Responses

  1. Nice review — I’m not always a fan of thrillers but this one piqued my interest — but I might pass since it sounds a bit uneven. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts!

  2. Sorry this one didn’t live up to your expectations. It is one I want to read though so please throw my name in the hat!

  3. The premise sounds good, but sorry it did not work well for you. I do have the ARC so I’ll need to pencil this in.

  4. Reading through your review reminded me of a series called Pretty Little Liars. It is on the same path.

  5. Thanks for the honest review, I think I’d skip this one, only because recently I’d read several books that I thought would be a thriller/mystery, only to find that they are character-driven novels with suspense being a backdrop instead. Sounds like this is one of those…

  6. Sorry to hear this one didn’t quite do it for you. I’ve got it on my Wish List and I got hooked on an excerpt that I read, so I’m still willing to give it a shot. Thank you for the chance to win a copy!

    geebee.reads AT gmail DOT com

  7. This sounds interesting. Thanks for the review. Please count me in. Thanks so much!

    nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

  8. It does sound interesting, but I don’t like when certain characters or situations seem like they are there for a purpose but it never pans out.

  9. Darn, I’m sorry you didn’t end up really enjoying this one, but thanks for being a part of the tour.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s