Customer Reviews for

The Bright Forever

Average Rating 3.5
( 42 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(16)

4 Star

(7)

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(11)

2 Star

(8)

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(0)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

ILLUMINATING!

Martin's THE BRIGHT FOREVER was an illuminating find. The author certainly has a gift for storytelling and knows how to keep a reader going and going. He provides the reader with small clues which always left me wanting more. It was definitely one of my fastest reads be...
Martin's THE BRIGHT FOREVER was an illuminating find. The author certainly has a gift for storytelling and knows how to keep a reader going and going. He provides the reader with small clues which always left me wanting more. It was definitely one of my fastest reads because I couldn't put it down!

The story itself is a sad one: a little girl full of life and innocence turns up missing in a small, sleepy town where the biggest news the town newspaper might ever report is the results of the church bake sale. I liken the story to Alice Sebold's THE LOVELY BONES and Kate Atkinson's CASE HISTORIES; however, it was a much richer story than either of those two novels (and I don't recommend the latter at all!).

Having just read (and not enjoying) CASE HISTORIES, I was a bit put off at first by THE BRIGHT FOREVER when I started reading and discovered that it was similar in structure and told from many points of view. It's not a structure I'm particularly fond of, as it can be somewhat confusing and overwhelming. Thankfully, author Lee Martin pulls it off beautifully. He offers one story with several interwoven viewpoints and truths, and that keeps the reader guessing.

Each chapter is named after a character or a specific date, which tells you whose point of view you'll be reading next. It was confusing at first, but once you get used to switching viewpoints and putting yourself in that character's shoes, you begin to appreciate the novel's style and ease into the story much more easily.

I don't want to give away any plot details; I'll let you discover those for yourself. However, think of this quote from the novel:

"The measure of a man's real character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out."

That's the heart of the story. Martin gives us a captivating -- yet heavy-hearted-- tale that examines real human nature and behavior.

posted by eak321 on April 14, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Slow read

Even though this book is a short 226 pages, it was slow going. I honesy didn't get into it until page 96. Even then, it wasn't a book I couldn't put down. It wasn't a terrible book, but it wasn't a great one either.

posted by penslnamia on June 5, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2008

    Ho...Hum......

    After I read the synopsis, I was anxious to read the book. Despite the grim content, it appeared to be a real cliffhanger. I don't read a lot of mysteries and novels that are similiar in nature to this, but I was so disappointed and bored. In the middle of the book I started skipping paragraphs and I started skimming through the book. This book had too much character development and not enough plot. I understand the importance of developing the characters, but after awhile I got bored and wanted the story to progress. To each his own, but this book was boring at times and moved too slow for my taste.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2013

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    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2008

    A reviewer

    I had to read this book for my book club, but I will never read it again. The book was a very fast read (I read it in 1 afternoon)but I went to bed that night feeling very disturbed. I did not like the fact that the reader is made to identify with the creepy stalker (Mr. Dees). I was very upset that the author clearly approves of falling in love with young children and making a collection of their personal things to keep by and adult's bedside. I really have better things to do than examine the psyche of a child molester, and that is really the majority of the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2006

    Sad book with poor values

    I tend to like books / films of this type. This book bothered me by the 'blame' factor it was looking to promote. I finsihed this book beacuse I was sure it would change it's tune. I finished it being disgusted.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2006

    boring read

    This novel did not live up to the 'hype'. Although the character development was interesting, it did not capture my attention and I ended up reading the last chapter so I would be 'finished'.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2005

    Okay but not great

    So I finished the book and I had termendous high hopes for this book, HUGE! However it was not. Overall the story was good and the story had huge potential.. here were my problems Here is the gist of the story - small town, little girl gets kidnapped,rattles the whole town. 1. The book is 268 pages and it only talks about the span of 4 days! 2. The little girl gets kidnapped, body is found, bad guy gets caught,bad guy gets just punishment, all within 4 days. This is just not reality. 3. The relationship between Mr. Dees and Katie is something I still have not resolved in figuring out if he really did just love her or if he was just a simple perv 4. The book introduces you to about 10 main characters and after the four days are up and everything is tied out, that is it the whole story drops. You are left wondering what happened to her, to him, to this one to that one. I am not giving any spoilers away because the book cover tells you pretty much the story - not rocket science. It was an okay read I am happy it was borrowed from the library. The story itself was a sad story but I do not think that his writing was so spell binding that any of these characters will stay with me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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