Little Darlings by Melanie Golding – The ARC I DNF’d
I think it’s pretty obvious by now that I don’t really post negative reviews on my blog. Every review I’ve done has always been very positive because they are of books that I love very much. However the more I thought about it, I don’t think that is fair to book readers that may view my blog because of a review that I post. I, of course, will never outright bash a book or an author because that’s just not constructive but I want to talk about what I didn’t like about a book.
Being so new to the bookblogging game, I think my first hardship was getting this book and having a tough time reading it. I’d seen so many positive reviews which of course made that even harder to voice that I didn’t like it. I even chose not to review it at all on netgalley because I didn’t want my opinion to cause any issues.
I ended up posting just something about that I didn’t finish it and I didn’t like it but that was just me and not necessarily anything to do with the book itself or the author. But today I thought that I’d kind of go over some of the things that made the book difficult for me to continue it. So stick around and try not to hate me too much!
“Mother knows best” takes on a sinister new meaning in this unsettling thriller perfect for fans of Neil Gaiman and Grimms’ Fairy Tales.
Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own…creatures. Yet when the police arrived, they saw no one. Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things.
A month passes. And one bright summer morning, the babies disappear from Lauren’s side in a park. But when they’re found, something is different about them. The infants look like Morgan and Riley―to everyone else. But to Lauren, something is off. As everyone around her celebrates their return, Lauren begins to scream, These are not my babies.
Determined to bring her true infant sons home, Lauren will risk the unthinkable. But if she’s wrong about what she saw…she’ll be making the biggest mistake of her life.
Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, Little Darlings will have you checking―and rechecking―your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.
Based on that, this book checks so many of my boxes that it’s insane. I was super excited for it and super pumped that I got approved for it. The first thing that I didn’t like was the mother, Lauren, in the book. She is a big part of the overall story because it’s all about what she’s done and what she experienced. I just couldn’t stand her as a person. She wasn’t really all that endearing to me.
I didn’t find myself sympathizing with her when she is in the hospital after she has the twins. I didn’t like the husband because he just seemed like a huge selfish prick. It was clear that his wife was dealing with a lot but he seemed totally okay with leaving her alone in the hospital and to not really believe her when she tells him what happened.
I do think that the writing about what happens in the hospital was well written but I just didn’t connect with Lauren to worry about her. Or to feel much fear for what was happening. Now before you argue “well when you are a mother” I’m already a mother of two. I should have connected with her just based on that. Giving birth isn’t fun, it’s actually traumatic in some ways for some people. And having twins? I can’t picture that being a good time. Or leaving the mother with much happiness other than the fact that her children are okay and healthy. I also couldn’t really imagine how I’d feel and have the fear that Lauren held even after she left that something would happen to her children.
It’s not even that she seemed so uninterested in being a mother or really having that ‘motherly instinct’ as I believe she mentioned. She just wasn’t relatable for me. So having the whole book hinge on what did or didn’t happen to her but not being able to feel anything for her makes reading this book hard.
On the flip side of that I did start off liking the detective, Harper. She seemed to really care about her job in a way that her superiors didn’t. I don’t think that I needed to know her sexuality to like her but it also didn’t detract from her character or make me feel like that was all she was about. She was a good detective that seemed bothered by what had happened to Lauren. My like for her waivered a bit and I can’t fully put my finger on why exactly though she certainly isn’t the reason I stopped reading.
I stopped not that far after Lauren got home, there is a suspicion she’s holding on her husband, she’s not over what happened when she was in the hospital but also not completely sure that she just wasn’t crazy. Based on the very beginning I have a rough idea of what happens eventually but I just couldn’t get there to continue. Which is so unfortunate because this is a book that I really should like.
I can say that the writing itself isn’t bad, that the premises isn’t bad. I just couldn’t get into it and I am but one person. There are so many that absolutely loved this book and that tells me that the book in and of itself is great, it’s just not a book for everyone and that’s okay too. Read it if you like the premise, don’t just take my word for it but at least there is a differing opinion on the book that can maybe give people an idea of whether they’d like the book or not.
I hope that no one thinks I was being harsh, please remember that these are just my opinions on the book and don’t mean that the book is bad or not worth someones time. Everyone should make their own judgments on a book. Having said that let me know if I’m completely off or if I should give this book another try. Tell me if I’m wrong! I’d love to read everyone else’s thoughts.