Thursday, September 9, 2010

Florence Hurd: Rommany

This novel was my first by Hurd. Published in 1976, it covers a family estate, Rommany, and the dark secrets that go along with it, through three generations of women. This novel has witches, murder, Satanism, kidnapping, you name it. It's there, and it all is connected by a map and potential treasure.

I read three quarters of it, and I had to put it down. I have a feeling that Hurd can probably write a good Gothic novel, but I don't think this is one. It is too sensational with few historical or realistic details. The novel is designed for shock more than anything, in my opinion.

I know some of my readers like Hurd. Which of her novels did you enjoy? I plan to try others by her and hope for better luck. If you liked this one, please post about why. I know some of my readers might enjoy it. I just did not.

Plot: 3/5 [Extremely fantastic and pretty silly after one intriguing turn with the first generation.]

Characterization: 2/5 [Very thin. I could picture only a couple of the characters, and none were really round-- other than perhaps Eustacia and Trina Blake.]

Atmosphere/spooky elements: 3/5 [I give it 3 just for the first segment of the novel involving the estate. The trick that is played upon Eustacia is unsettling and confusing for the reader. That twist was the only interesting one in the novel.]

Literary: 2/5 [In short, no. This is sensationalized fiction.]

Rating: 2+ stars **.5

I don't recommend this one.


jwade19 said...

Sorry you didn't enjoy "Rommany". I've never read that one, so I can't say if the writing is "typical" Hurd.

The 2 Hurd books that I've read and really liked are:
"The House on Russian Hill"

Obviously, tastes are subjective, and what I enjoy reading you might not, so take my recommendations with a grain of salt!!

lisalgreer said...

I will definitely be looking for those books on my next trip to the secondhand store! I could see glimmers of good stuff in this one. The first third of the book was interesting, but then it sort of went south. Thanks for the recommendations. :) I like to give authors multiple tries. I mean, it could just be I'm having an off reading week when a novel doesn't seem too great. ;)

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