I recently got my hands on a copy of her newest book…MARIONETTE.
I was a bit hesitant about reading a book from someone I know…ye Gods…what if I hate it ?? Especially when you are dealing with subject matter such as this book does…attempted suicide, homosexuality, hiding who you are and dysfunctional family bonds.
Suicide has touched my life…and in every case…every single one…those left behind are broken and shattered and struggle to find their way past the moment that the person who took their life passed the burden on to them.
I grew up trying to be the perfect daughter, wife, mother…never trusting that the real me was good enough. I hid behind a veneer of what I perceived was acceptable.
As for dysfunctional family bonds…I am writing a book on those. From experience.
Thus…when I started reading Marionette…I was like…oh no !!! Because the beginning of the book starts with a failed suicide attempt.
Then…wham bamm thank you ma’am, you step right in to her crazy family where Paige hides everything important about herself.
Three out of four boxes I know about…Marionette was hitting close to home.
Paige Alexander is a young woman who has lived her life with parents who frankly…need shooting on sight. Seriously. These are the sort of people that were they dogs…then they would be euthanized to protect the community .
Paige loves Jessica. Secretly. Why you may ask ? Well, for that you need to read Marionette.
What can be a problem with books such as this one, I have found at least, is making the characters believable. Too many writers turn the people in their books in to cardboard cutouts that have no real dimension to them.
As Paige goes off to college, and to counseling, piece by piece we get to travel within [think Fantastic Voyage] her until we finally end up completely in Paige’s head, really knowing her.
Along the way we also get to know Jess better. Quite early on you wonder a bit about whether Jess is all she seems. I am not going to give any spoilers here, so if you want to know the answer to that…you know the drill…get the book. Why does this older, educated, confident, funny woman want to be with the younger, damaged Paige ?
The other characters in the book, except for the completely hellish parents, are all well written complementary characters. Not that the parents aren’t well conceived, they are just downright evil people.
Liddy, Paige’s counselor, is one of my favourites in the book. Slowly through Liddy, we the reader get to know Paige.
Then there are the college friends. Audrey [the roommate], aptly nick named ‘Minnie Mouse’ by Paige. Jenna and Karen [the suite mates]. Jewels, Emily, Tom, Ben and Aaron. Paige’s relationship with Tom provides a few nice twists.
Then there are:
- Mel and Wesley. Talk about a couple who need a swift kick.
- Alex. Paige’s childhood friend. This was one of the saddest but most unexpected relationships in Marionette.
- Abbie. Paige’s sister. Abbie has more than her share of demons too.
- Julia. Who runs a diner and through her food has become part of Jess’s family and so therefore also Paige’s.
This is a book about relationships. How they can grow and surprise you. How you can survive the ugly ones and rejoice in the ones that lift your spirit. It is also about secrets.
I read Marionette in one sitting. Then I went back to read it again for this review and was just as delighted the second time.
Thank goodness it has also been edited and proofread. Self published books that haven’t are sadly too many to name these days. They do little to serve the readers or the authors who can’t be bothered to make sure that their finished book actually is that – finished.
I look forward to reading the next of T B Markinson’s efforts after this.
This article was originally published on BlogCritics: Book Review ‘Marionette’ by T B Markinson.