[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Loved Ones" by Steven Middlehurst.]The Loved Ones
starts with the main character Maggie coming home early from a trip only to find her fiancee cheating on her with another woman. As her world is collapsing around her she decides to return to her parent's house. On the way there she sees a young boy standing in the middle of the road, she struggles to stop the car to prevent hitting him, but once the car stops she can't see him anymore, and seconds later a car comes around the corner in the wrong lane, which would have hit her head on if she hadn't stopped.
As Maggie tries to move on after her breakup and rebuild her life she continues to see visions of the boy and starts to wonder if she is going crazy, or if the boy is real.
I liked the general plot of this book, but felt it was poorly executed in spots. Although it was supposed to be a mystery I found myself knowing what was going to happen next more often than not, which really lessens the suspense and makes parts of it tedious and boring to read, as I felt it was telling me what I already knew.
I did enjoy the characters and how they interacted, and I felt the story was well paced for the most part. At times the characters did seem a bit slow in figuring out what was going on, but that leads back to the book being predictable. I felt the book was carried on the shoulders of two characters and their interactions, and while it was interesting, it wasn't enough to carry the book by itself.
Overall I felt the characters were done well, and the idea for the plot was good, but too much was given away to make it suspenseful and keep me hooked. Although the book wasn't for me i did enjoy the character interaction. I would have to rate this book 2 out of 4
, if the mystery would have been there it would have got at least a 3, but constantly knowing what was going to happen really ruined the book for me.
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