The Lemon Grove By: Helen Walsh

Title:  The Lemon Grove
Author:  Helen Walsh
Publisher:  Berkley
Reviewed By:  Arlena Dean
Rating:  3.5

"The Lemon Grove" by Helen Walsh

What is this novel about:

"Set on the rugged, mountainous west coast of Mallorca, this taut, sultry, brilliantly paced novel is an urgent meditation on female desire, the vicissitudes of marriage and the allure of youth.

Taking place over the course of one week, The Lemon Grove lands in the heat of Deia, a village on an island off the southeast coast of Spain. Jenn and Greg are on their annual holiday to enjoy languorous, close afternoons by the pool, and relaxed dinners overlooking the rocks. But the equilibrium is upset by the arrival of their teenage daughter, Emma, and her boyfriend, Nathan. Jenn, in her early forties, loves her (older) husband and her (step)daughter and is content with her life, she thinks. But when this beautiful, reckless young man comes into her world, she is caught by a sexual compulsion that she's seldom felt before. As the lines hotly blur between attraction, desire and obsession, Jenn’s world is thrown into tumult--by Nathan's side, she could be young and carefree once again, and at this stage in her life, the promise of youth is every bit as seductive as the promise of passion. Jenn struggles between the conflicting pulls of resistance and release, and the events of the next few days have the potential to put lives in jeopardy as the players carry out their roles in this unstoppably sexy and unputdownable novel from a brilliant observer of the human condition."

What I got from this novel.....

Well, I can say this turned out to be some holiday in Mallorca for this family.  As I was reading I was wondering when this family all got together plus the visitor who would have thought that this type of situation would happen.  What forty year old woman would be looking at their step daughter who was fifteen boyfriend who was just seventeen years old.  I will say the whole thing made no sense to me.  Yes, I know Jenn is in her early forties, married to a much older husband but why the interest in her step daughter's boyfriend?  This author did put together a read that takes place within a week...thank god for that!  I did like the way this author was able to give us a story that made you seem as though you are there in the midst of it all listening in. I don't know that may not have been a good thing now that I think on it.    With this story being heavily sexual with Jenn's thoughts and all about Nathan  with this being a betrayal of not only her husband but her step daughter too and my point is that  I will say I was at awe of it all.  Is this another Mrs. Robinson?  Now add the father Greg's secret and the stepdaughter problems and all I can say is this was some read.

I picked this read so I knew I had to read it to the very end but I will say it really did noting for me...the characters or even the story. I will say that I did not like any of the characters, however, I will say that this author did a good job at making them very real and I may be reaching a little.  Not to say this author didn't  do a good job with writing because she really has a way with words,  but it was still far too intense for me to really follow the flow of it all.  All that I was able to think of was the forty year old having feelings for this seventeen year old who was still a child.  Let's not discuss that ending other than to say you will have to pick up "The Lemon Grove" and see what you think of this read for yourself.  I will stop here because I don't want to give away any anymore spoilers. 

My Impression of this novel...

I will say "The Lemon Grove" left me shocked, very intensed....with characters that were flawed, broken and even dislikable.  The ending to this story was yet another  strange one for me and at the end for me I breathed with relief  saying  thank God I made it through this read!



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