Mar 9, 2018

Review: My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent

My Absolute Darling

My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent
Published August 29, 2017; Riverhead
Genre: thriller, literary fiction
Setting: woods of Northern California coast
My comments: This novel has beautifully written descriptions of the wild woods near the coast of northern California. It is the setting for a story of a young girl, Julia aka Turtle, who is raised in isolation by a mentally and physically abusive father for whom she has conflicting feelings, who teaches her to grow up able to protect herself, and survive in all situations, except for the threats coming from him. Possessive and cruel, Martin forces Turtle to defend herself in the end as she slowly starts to grow up, mix with others her age, and realize the unusualness of her family situation. A startling coming of age story like no other. 

Terrifying and brutal in parts, the novel is mesmerizing, the reader can't help rooting all the way for the freedom and redemption of this unusual young girl.

Rating: 5/5

Book beginning:
The old house hunkers on its hill, all peeling white paint, bay windows, and spindled wooden railings overgrown with climbing roses and poison oak. Rose runners have prized off clapboards that now hang snarled in the canes.The gravel drive is littered with spent casings caked in verdigris. Martin Alveston gets out of the truck and does not look back at Turtle sitting in the cab, but walks up the porch, his jungle boots sounds hollowly on the boards, a big man in flannels and Levi's opening the sliding glass doors. Turtle waits, listening to the engine ticking, and then she follows him. 

56% of ebook:
"You're lucky you didn't die."
"I know it."
"I'm serious, Turtle."

Source: Library ebook. 

What new books are you reading this weekend? 
Memes: The Friday 56. Grab a book, turn to page 56 or 56% of your eReader. Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it, and add your URL post in Linky at Freda's Voice. Also visit Book Beginning at Rose City Reader


  1. I'm reading a book about a girl who went through a similar situation with her father. It's a good read and I'm adding this one to my list.

    My 56 from Alice In Murderland

    1. If I remember correctly, The Marsh King's Daughter has a similar theme.

  2. Sounds intriguing. This week I am featuring Under the Shadows by Gwen Florio - a mystery from my review stack. Happy reading!

  3. Oh, wow, I have this one tucked away...and I should bring it out right away! Thanks for sharing.

    Here's mine: “THE FRENCH GIRL”

  4. This is a local author for me, so I really feel obligated to give it a read. Fortunately it looks really good based on your Friday 56.
    Here's a link to my Friday 56

  5. This sounds similar to the book I'm featuring on my blog today. I enjoy stories of people surviving against all odds, so I'm sure I'd like My Absolute Darling. Thanks for posting excerpts.
    Here's the link to my Friday post: The Marsh King’s Daughter.

    1. I understand The Marsh King's Daughter is to be made into a movie.

  6. Wow a 5/5 rating. Must be a good one! I'll look for it. My Friday Quotes

    1. I am usually generous with ratings! But this was a good one, but definitely R rated.

  7. I love that 56! Pulled me right in!! Happy weekend!

  8. I might pick this up just for the cover!

  9. I really like the beginning of the book. I like the Fri56 too.


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