Customer Reviews for

Before You Know Kindness

Average Rating 3
( 28 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(5)

4 Star

(6)

3 Star

(9)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(3)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

excellent book

I highly recommend this book. I could not stop reading. Although the story focuses on an ordinary family, the author shows us how unexpected events can turn everyone's life upside down.

posted by Anonymous on December 16, 2007

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

A lesson in frustration

Reading this book has been one of the most frustrating experiences of my life. Bohjalian seems to be following a series of instructions from a writing seminar: incorporate description into dialogue, maintain interest by alternating between various scenes/characters, fin...
Reading this book has been one of the most frustrating experiences of my life. Bohjalian seems to be following a series of instructions from a writing seminar: incorporate description into dialogue, maintain interest by alternating between various scenes/characters, find "quirky" expressions ("a decade and CHANGE") and scatter them about to create "voice." The problem is that these tools seem too obvious--I'm conscious of him working VERY HARD, and don't seem to work.

I care about what happens to these people just enough to make me soldier on (I, too, read just about everything, and face life with an optimism that even if this moment is less than satisfying, what comes next might be different), but I find the parents incredibly inept and everyone quite whiny and self-indulgent. I fear that I will be disappointed at the end (I'm ~ 2/3 of the way through) either because I have been emotionally manipulated, or because everything is going to tie up in such a nice little bow it could be packaged by Hallmark. Either way, I'm not optimistic.

I also get the feeling that the author thinks I'm too stupid to recognize causality, even after I've been hit over the head with the same analogies or reminded of the same event over and over again. The book might have been decent with a more assertive editor, but I guess we won't ever know. If this is his "best work" so far, I'm certainly not interested in reading anything further.

posted by sherii on October 17, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2005

    Very Disappointed

    The description of this book sounded interesting, but what a disappointment. It was very, very slow and boring. I was not able to get into it at all. None of the characters was likeable. And I was angry that Charlotte was, in my opinion, not being held responsible for what she had done to her father. And the uncle was being blamed more than she was. I found myself waiting for a big trial or something to make the story more interesting and was let down. I got this book from the library so the only consolation was that I did not have to pay for it. It's a shame because I really did enjoy 'Midwives'.....oh well.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 22, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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