The Winter People: Suspense-LESS

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2 of 5 stars

Bottom line: This book had a whole lotta hype for not a whole lotta reason.

The Winter People actually had a great creepy start that really captured my attention. So from the beginning, you are given the impression that there will be chilling ghostly happenings wrapped up in a suspenseful package. But then there isn’t.

So let the book bashing commence…

What happens is this (no spoilers, I promise): in the present day Ruthie’s mom goes missing… in 1908 Sara’s daughter dies and becomes one of the “winter people”… and a random guy named Gary stumbles upon the missing link to the story. The story is about figuring out what happened to Ruthie’s mom, what happened to Sara/Gertie, and what happened to Gary in conjuntion. The entire book is a wild goose chase of putting clues together. I really didn’t get any of the suspense that I wanted, and it mostly felt like Scooby Doo. Really.. Scooby Doo.

The chapters switched back and forth between the present and 1908, which is fine – I’ve read many books written this way and they were great! But McMahon repeats exact elements of the story when going back and forth and creates a very strong sense of deja vu. And you end up being confused if you read it already or if you just think that you read it already. Not okay.

Also, the sideplot with Gary and his wife Katherine was completely unnecessary and distracting. I believe the story would have been much better with further development of the main characters and elimination of Gary and Katherine. Plus, their story was left hanging at the end for no good reason.

This was the first time I have read a book by Jennifer McMahon, and I honestly disliked this book so much that I probably won’t read McMahon again. The story was too cookie cutter for me.. with no intrigue, no exceptional plot, and no major character development

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9 thoughts on “The Winter People: Suspense-LESS

    • I haven’t read The Shining Girls. I remember your post about it though, so I think it is somewhat similar. It does stink that it was so disappointing because I was really interested for the first couple of chapters.

  1. Hmm. How disappointing. I started reading this book a couple of months ago, got frustrated by format issues with the ARC, and put it aside after only about 30 pages. I figured I’d give it another try eventually… but you may have just convinced me not to bother.

  2. Thanks for the honest review Lauren…always is disappointing when it hypes you up at the start only to let you down after 40 pages…

      • Haha, it’s really OK. I have a tendency to adore anything and everything Jhumpa Lahiri and I’ve seen a lot of people feel less satisfied with her most recent book (though I still love it). Stuck in a book myself right now that I think some people would rave about if they like film and the early 1900s, but for me it’s been tough to get into. Every book has its own soulmates (which is my way of saying us being book snobs is both plausible and acceptable, haha).

  3. I actually really want to give this one a read. It’s a shame it didn’t work well for you on the suspense front, but I’ll read it anyway. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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