The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro

theperfumecollector

 

This is another one of those books that I bought months ago, probably over a year ago to be honest, during a Nook sale and never bothered to read. But lately I have been driving Uber and take my Nook with me. During a lull I opened up this book hoping for a few minutes of amusement and found myself completely engrossed in it. It’s another one of those book I didn’t really expect to enjoy but couldn’t stop myself. That seems to happen to me a lot. I wonder if it says something ill about my personality?

Anyway…

We begin with a woman named Eva D’Orsey who lets you know in no uncertain terms that she is on death’s door and really doesn’t give a damn. I can respect a woman like that. She gives you every impression that she knows her own mind and will make her own choices and knows the consequences of those choices. We spend very little time with her and pretty much immediately jump to the character Grace’s point of view on a different continent.

Right there is the main complaint I have about the book. Nearly every chapter we change who the narrator is, what year it is, and where they are. I found that frustrating to follow. Part of the time you are in the 1950’s with one character then you jump to the 1920’s with another and more than half the time it takes you several paragraphs to figure out who you are supposed to be with. It severely interrupted the flow trying to figure out which narrator you were with.

Moving on, Grace is living in England in an unhappy marriage. I suppose it would be more surprising if I said she was in a happy marriage because aren’t most unhappy? But, after learning her husband is a great big cheater, Grace discovers she had been given an inheritance from someone she has never met, Eva D’Orsey. Grace travels alone to Paris where Eva lived to meet with her lawyer. She hopes to figure out why she was given this inheritance as she believes it to be a mistake.

While in Paris and away from her husband and all things familiar, Grace comes to know herself. She discovers her own wants and needs away from her deceitful spouse. Eventually, she comes to learn who Eva was and why Grace was her only benefactor. I won’t spoil that here but I will say that I was disappointed. Even before the reason was revealed it had become painfully obvious. I like a good surprise but the GASP factor wasn’t there which was a real let down.

Despite the fact that the overall plot was pretty good the author left a lot of plot holes. I don’t mind some mystery but gaping holes are another thing altogether. Maybe I’m being overly picky, it is certainly a possibility. Either way, I think this book is worth at least a once over. I won’t be picking it up again, that’s for sure, but it was worth one time through. Those damn plot holes though…

 

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