Review: In Search of the Rose Notes

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: In Search of the Rose NotesIn Search of the Rose Notes by Emily Arsenault
Published by William Morrow on July 26, 2011
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Pages: 369
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley

Eleven-year-olds Nora and Charlotte were best friends. When their teenage babysitter, Rose, disappeared under mysterious circumstances, the girls decided to “investigate.” But their search—aided by paranormal theories and techniques gleaned from old Time-Life books—went nowhere.

Years later, Nora, now in her late twenties, is drawn back to her old neighborhood—and to her estranged friend—when Rose’s remains are finally discovered. Upset over their earlier failure to solve the possible murder, Charlotte is adamant that they join forces and try again. But Nora was the last known person to see Rose alive, and she’s not ready to revisit her troubled adolescence and the events surrounding the disappearance—or face the disturbing secrets that are already beginning to reemerge.

When I started this book, I really had no idea what it was about or what to expect. I requested it ages ago and have only just gotten around to reading it (obviously). Well, I was completely blown away. I didn’t have high expectations, but the book kept drawing me in. The writing and the narrative style were utterly captivating.

The narrative alternates between Nora’s present (2006) and her past (1996). This gives a good view into what happened then, along with the knowledge only a grown up can bring to the situation. The story lines from her childhood dovetail perfectly with the present happenings.

While the whole book has a spooky feel to it, there is little of the horrible in it. Mostly, the book just left me thinking about how fragile people are and what a huge impact actions can have. This is one of those books that I find myself having difficulty explaining, because I was more caught up in the beauty of the writing and the fascination of the relationships between people than something particularly dramatic in the tale, and those that I could relate would be spoilers.

Anyway, I heartily recommend this to anyone interested in ghosts, mysteries, or the difficulty in considering the events of youth from a mature perspective. This was a truly beautiful and tragic story.


One response to “Review: In Search of the Rose Notes”

  1. This sounds like a really good book, and something that I would be really interested in reading. Thanks for the review, can’t wait to check it out!

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