O’Brien, Annemarie. Lara’s Gift. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2013.
“In 1914 Russia, Lara is being groomed by her father to be the next kennel steward for the Count’s borzoi dogs unless her mother bears a son, but her visions, although suppressed by her father, seem to suggest she has special bond with the dog.” – CIP. [Borzoi; Dogs; Fathers and daughters; Historical fiction; Russia; Sex role]
“On the eve my beloved Ryczar was born, under a bright full moon, the north wind whistled and howled” (1).
The north wind whistled and howled under a bright full moon on the night Ryczar was born.
Why? The birth of Ryczar is the most important part of this sentence. Not the character’s love for him. Not the weather. End a sentence with a significant word.
“‘Hunting for mushrooms,’ I answered, trying to make it sound more significant than it actually was” (21).
“Hunting for mushrooms,” I answered, trying to make it sound significant.
Why? End a sentence with a word that anchors the sentence.
Every page of this book has too many unnecessary words. Too many awkward sentences poorly punctuated.
Nevertheless, readers who want a dog story with a female protagonist might appreciate this novel. It is quickly paced and provides a glimpse of Russia in the early 1900s.
Tips on critiquing stories HERE.
Recommended stories from around the world HERE.