Mermaids in the Basement

Mermaids in the Basement

eBook - 2007
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Struggling with the loss of her mother, a case of writer's block, and her boyfriend's affair, Renata DeChavannes travels to her Gulf Coast family home, where she struggles to become the empowered woman her formidable grandmother believes her to be.
Publisher: Pymble, NSW ; New York, NY : HarperCollins e-books, 2007
ISBN: 9780061834264


From Library Staff

When Renata DeChavannes life seems to be unraveling, she longs to escape from her eccentric family. Her dreams of escape are dashed when her father’s young fiancée is found unconscious at the bottom of a pool and Renata becomes the prime suspect.

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Aug 25, 2016

I'm often drawn to books with pretentious titles such as this one, with an artsy cover and focusing on family drama. I suppose I enjoy reading about families with secrets juicier than my own. I've never been to the south, so I don't pretend their way of life, or their speech, or their cuisine- but it's wonderful to read a slice of life story like this one and feel like you belong, even if it's just for a few minutes. Point Clear sounds just heavenly- and I'd never thought I'd say such a thing about Alabama.
I suppose my only gripe(s) with this book reside in the characters themselves- their inability to tell the truth to Renata about the past. It seems as though she needs to place her hooks into these older women to drag it out of them. It seems rather a dichotomy: they will gossip about anyone and anything, unless it's about Renata's parents. Why didn't Shelby sit down with Renata and tell her the truth before it was too late? I would much rather my children hear the truth from me than someone else. I suppose the novel wouldn't have been as long had Honora, Isabella and Gladys sat her down and told her everything at once; you know, like it would have happened in real life.
Can we stop a minute and talk about Isabella drugging everyone? That's an offense that's dangerously overlooked here. She has clearly put several people in the hospital, and Honora and everyone else just slap their knees and go "Oh that Isabella". I would call the cops on her in a second. Get your kicks somewhere else, lady.
All in all, the book read smoothly enough, and it felt like a decent beach read. If you liked Secrets of the Ya-ya Sisterhood, you'll love this one.

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