The Paper Palace

The Paper Palace features exceptional writing. The writing is one of the few parts I did enjoy. However, the story is continuously jumping here and there in the life of our protagonist, Elle, and it’s very hard to follow. There are just so many small characters trying to remember who they are feels like a losing game.

The book started to lose me when Elle has sex outside the cabin with someone while her husband, mother, children, and his wife are close by inside. I considered quitting at this point, I didn’t really feel like reading a book centered around cheating on your spouse.

I decided to stick with it, and in hindsight, I should have quit and moved on to reading something more appealing.

Some people will say that this book brings a lot of taboo subjects into the light, and gives them space so people can talk about them. Sure, I get that. I get that we should be talking about these things, we need to talk about them. But, ugh, this book is not the way to do that.

Besides adultery, we have child neglect/abandonment, child sexual abuse, rape of a child, murder of a child (or he’s 18, so maybe not quite a child, but you get my point), incest rape, and cancer.

As you can see, this is not a happy story. If you’re hoping for a happy ending, it’s not there. If you’re looking for closure, it was almost there, and then nope, the author took a detour and left us with an open ending.

There are not even really any redeeming characters. Yes, Elle has suffered a lot in her life, and we should forgive her transgressions I suppose. But seriously? I don’t want to.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

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