Ana wakes up in the Botanical Gardens of the Palace of Portici in Campania, Italy, with no memory of who she is and what she is doing there. In spite of this, she manages to find her way back to her apartment and her boyfriend, Tommy. While she sleeps, she experiences disturbing dreams where a young woman named Ann Leigh is about to marry Shane, her childhood friend, in Nebraska. Who is this girl? Does this dream come from Ana’s imagination, or is this a memory? Little by little, Ana pieces her life back together, and, on the way, discovers that some things can’t be fixed.
The Making of Nebraska Brown is Louise Caiola’s second book after Wishless. This new adult mystery deals with questions of identity and trust. The story is entertaining and fast-paced, and the author knows how to keep the suspense alive throughout the book. However, the dreams (memories?) that Ana experiences would likely not come in a chronological order in real life. By choosing to write the book this way, the author probably didn’t want to confuse the reader, but it resulted in distancing him/her from the story. In addition, some aspects of Tommy’s behavior were odd. I don’t want to give too much of the plot away, but let’s just say that the way Ana and Tommy started their relationship was very unlikely. Finally, I found that Ann Leigh was not a likable character, and that she was very selfish. It kept me from identifying with her, or feeling any compassion for her plight.
The Making of Nebraska Brown was sent to me for free in exchange for an honest review.
Fun facts about the author:
- As a child, Louise Caiola was a fan of the Nancy Drew mysteries.
- Her favorite authors are Elizabeth Gilbert, Laurie Halse Anderson, Gillian Flynn, James Patterson and Kathryn Stockett.
About the author and her work: Louise Caiola’s Website.
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