The Forgotten Roses by Deborah Doucette


Title: The Forgotten Roses
Author: Deborah Doucette
Publisher: Owl Canyon Press
Publication Date: February 24, 2014
ISBN: 9780991121106
Number of Pages: 244
How I Got It: From author
Format: Paperback

Description (From Back Cover) : 
Rebecca Griffin has everything she could ever want--or so says her big-hearted, opinionated Italian-American family. But now her marriage is unraveling and her teenage daughter is hurtling toward self-destruction. While Rebecca struggles to hang onto her husband and save her daughter, she learns of the mysterious death of a young woman long ago at a local prison. As Rebecca's mother, Eva, reveals their family's connection to the girl, Rebecca is drawn into the story--it haunts her. A search for answers takes Rebecca from her small idyllic New England town, to the congested streets of East Boston and the tight-knit Italian neighborhood where most of the family still resides. As she tries to dig up the facts of the young girl's life and violent death, the puzzle pieces in Rebecca's life begin to take shape and she faces the difficult truth about her husband, Drew. Rebecca, her troubled daughter, Dana, and the enigmatic figure from the past, unknowingly embark on a collision course one desperate autumn night when the answers they seek come to light in the most forgotten of places from the most innocent of messengers.

My Review: 
After reading this novel, I read on Deborah Doucette's Goodreads author page that "[t]he books that influenced [her] writing are Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood, then Barbara Kingsolver's The Bean Trees, and finally Alice Hoffman's Turtle Moon. All wonderful writers with unique voices, lyrical prose and sharp imagery." I believe THE FORGOTTEN ROSES is indeed a combination of these three novels. The cover and title were originally going to be the first things I would have suggested changing. My first impression was that the softly lit roses on the cover were a generic stock photo and the title wistful and generic, but upon completion of the novel, I think they are both perfect choices.  Without giving away any spoilers, I will simply say that I dare you to think differently when you finish reading it for yourself. 
Doucette nails the guilt and confusion of being a working mother with a rebellious child and a distant husband. Her mental photographs and internal dialogue are precise as well as universal and her imagery is shocking and memorable. 
There are a few inconsistencies and grammatical errors throughout the text and I wish the ending was a bit more detailed but Doucette reeled me in and I couldn't let go. I will be recommending THE FORGOTTEN ROSES as a book that may have been overlooked by mainstream media but definitely deserves a read. 

*** I received this book in exchange for an honest review ***

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