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The Lake (The Lake Series, Book 1) Kindle Edition
|Length: 308 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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|Age Level: 12 - 18|
|Grade Level: 6 - 12|
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Top Customer Reviews
I’ve got to talk about Layla first. I hated her. At first, I felt kinda bad. She’s had a hard life, not too many rays of sunshine came her way, but she was still pushing on. Then, it all went downhill.
Her grandparents die, which isn’t a spoiler, it’s in the synopsis. Layla goes to live with her aunt and uncle, who she calls Claire and Luke, without the “aunt” and “uncle” prefix, respectively. The reason for this wasn’t disrespectful, as Layla explains to Will, but just that it would feel weird to call them Aunt and Uncle when there’s really no real relationship among them. That wasn’t my issue. My issue with Layla is that she is the most selfish, most disgusting, most annoying character in this entire book and quite possibly in all the books I’ve read so far.
When she meets Will, who is obviously the love interest, she immediately falls in love with him. I’ll talk about that later. But it doesn’t take long for her to forget about all of the love and care that Luke and Claire have shown Layla, before she thinks “He’s [Will] the only good thing in my life…” Really?
The worst thing Layla ever thought/said? That’s easy:
“He [Will] is the only thing that has brought me pure joy since before Mom and Dad died. Then I experience the most horrid thought I’ve ever had in my life: I don’t really wish they were here. If they weren’t dead, I wouldn’t be here and I wouldn’t have will. I’m glad they’re [her parents and grandparents] all gone because I want Will more than anything else in the world.”
Can you even imagine thinking such a vile thought about parents who did nothing but love you? If my parents died, even if I suddenly had thousands of suitors pining for my love, I would take my parents back in a matter of seconds. Layla pretends to be horrified that she thought such a thing, but she really isn’t. She admits, two seconds later, that it isn’t true that she “would take her parents back in a heartbeat, even if it meant losing Will.” I truly cannot understand why Grant thought this was a good idea. It’s an insulting to people who have actually lost their parents and would love to have them back in their lives. It’s an insult to people who have lost their grandparents and would love to have them back. It’s just wrong. So, so wrong.
I have to stop here or else this entire review will be on how terrible Layla is, but that was definitely the worst thing about her.
The rest of the characters were annoying. None of the teenagers talked like teenagers, so I kept forgetting they were around seventeen. I was imagining thirteen year olds for most of the time. All of the other characters were plot pushers, collectively saying Push! Push! under their breaths every time they were given some book time. And for some reason, Grant made them all give Layla random praises for no reason. Why does she need so much praise? She hasn’t really done much. She wasn’t anything special or obviously unique, she wasn’t even a cute kind of plain, she was just bland. Unseasoned watery soup, that’s what Layla was.
I didn’t like Will either. He has an explosive outburst over something he agreed to and it was pretty scary. If I had been Layla, I would have seen it as a warning sign of dangerous outbursts to come. He eventually forces Layla to be in a relationship with him after she tells him that she doesn’t want to by publicly calling her out. Even though she’s ‘happy’ he did it, it was still wrong.
I have to talk about Marcus. He was a plot pusher too but I actually liked him. He didn’t get much book time and Layla and Will forced him to do things for them with only their interests in mind, but he was cute. I liked him and I think he deserves much better than anyone in the book.
Remember how I said Layla immediately falls in love with Will? Well, she does. By the time I’m 31% in, Will is already declaring his undying love: “From the moment you slammed into me that night at the concert, I have loved every second of every minute that I have spent with you.” Um, okay, I guess. It just continues on from there and every other page they’re shouting their “love” from the rooftops at each other. It made no sense. It is undeniably important for the two characters (or three in this case (unfortunately)) that are involved in the love triangle to actually, you know, bond with each other. You cannot write a believable relationship if there’s no reason for there to be a relationship. As a reader, I needed to see Will and Layla spend time with each other, meaningful time that wasn’t spent saying “I love you so much.” over and over. Love is so much more than putting “I love you.” on repeat.
Gosh, what even was this plot? I wasn’t even wearing my glasses and I could see the entire lineup of events from three miles away. The plot was slow on top of that, taking its sweet time to describe things I didn’t care about. Who cares how Layla’s move from her old house to Luke and Claire’s house was? There was no reason to care! Why should meaningless conversations that definitely did not contribute to anything except a superficial relationship between Layla and her aunt and uncle mean anything to me? Why should I have to sit through some eleven chapters of it?
(This became a lot longer than I wanted it to, so I’ll wrap it up here.)
Would I recommend The Lake? Gracious, no. I don’t even know why it’s a series because it should only be one book. I know it’s free, but it’s not worth the time it takes to read it.
And I know I said I'm not into teen romance novels, but I had to get to the end of the story, so I actually purchased the 2nd and 3rd installments of this story - "Troubled Waters" and "Safe Harbor".
The dialogue is very clean, one can find worse language in family friendly TV. And aside from only a few minor editing oops, I found this to be an excellent book. I would give 4.5 stars if I could.
Annalisa has done a fantastic job in creating a work that would appeal to reader of all ages.
So it starts with Layla moving in with her aunt and uncle after her grandfather dies. They are the last relatives she has and she wants everything to work out. She doesn't really know them, but they seem nice and caring. Of course at the first event she goes to in town she sees Will and they are instantly attracted to each other. They quickly fall in love, but they have to hide that because his father is evil and will do anything to stop them from being together.
The plot seemed like it would be good, but man it dragged on and on and on. Layla blames herself for her parents death, she caused the accident. It is obvious it was going to be something stupid and she didn't really do anything, but you have to wait for most of the book until you get to what that was. She goes on and on and on and on and on about her life and things that have happened. She goes on about how when her parents died it was horrible, her grandmother was horrible to her, her grandfather was nice but needed a caretaker (her), how she is so happy to be with her aunt and uncle now. How her time with her grandparents was penance for killing her parents. Which fine, I understand all of that, but I don't need it repeated again and again and again. That is one main issue I have with the book, Everything gets repeated again and again and again so much so that by halfway through I was just like enough! I get it! I understand!! You don't have to keep having the same thoughts/conversations for me to remember what she is thinking/feeling! I GET IT! Please stop repeating everything. This book could have been significantly shorter had it not just repeated everything over and over again. It was too much. It just went on and on.
Another issue? The characters were very one dimensional. I didn't really care about any of them. I really didn't like Will. He seemed like kind of a jerk, but somehow everyone liked him and he was so magically amazing. I don't get it. I didn't see it, but everyone keeps saying it. That is what happened with all of the characters. You would hear again and again and again how someone is x, but they wouldn't really show you they were. The dad who is evil? Well....for most of the book I didn't see it. So he helps beat up someone and Layla sees, but even after that she is again and again and again told that he will do anything to keep her away from Will and she is just like well he won't really do anything bad...then he doesn't really. He is the boogie man, but never really seems to do much. I was very disappointed in his terror he unleashed on the family. I expected more, especially after being hit over the head time and time again with how horrible and evil this guy was. Then Layla and Will in love? I didn't see that either. We just were told again and again that they are. They can't be without each other. I didn't see why they liked each other.
One other thing with this book. Layla is moved into this world where people are super rich, but we never get to see that world. We don't really get to see many of the day to day things she has to get used to. She goes to this super fancy school, but we never see her interact with her classmates or see how she tries to fit in. We just get her going on and on about Will and her past life and how she loves Will, but his father is horrible. So much repeating of the same thing, when the story really could have used more story. More something to show the characters and what they were really like, instead of just telling us. It was a wasted opportunity. There is not much I liked about this book. Really I am trying to think of anything I did...it just was not very good. I am not sure why there are so many amazing reviews for it. It was boring and repetitive and slow and I just didn't care about any of it. I didn't realize this was part of a series, but I will not be reading the next book (even though this book does end in kind of a cliffhanger. You don't find out what happened, but I don't care enough to try and read another long drawn out story).
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