Thursday, 10 October 2013

Review: A Place to Call Home by Deborah Smith

Title: A Place to Call Home 
Author: Deborah Smith
Release Date: May 4th, 1998
Publisher: Bantam
Buy: Amazon

Goodreads Summary

Twenty years ago, Claire Maloney was the willful, pampered, tomboyish daughter of the town's most respected family, but that didn't stop her from befriending Roan Sullivan, a fierce, motherless boy who lived in a rusted-out trailer amid junked cars. No one in Dunderry, Georgia--least of all Claire's family--could understand the bond between these two mavericks. But Roan and Claire belonged together...until the dark afternoon when violence and terror overtook them, and Roan disappeared from Claire's life. Now, two decades later, Claire is adrift, and the Maloneys are still hoping the past can be buried under the rich Southern soil. But Roan Sullivan is about to walk back into their lives....By turns tender and sexy and heartbreaking and exuberant, A Place to Call Home is an enthralling journey between two hearts--and a deliciously original novel from one of the most imaginative and appealing new voices in Southern fiction.


I read this book on a hunch really (I am not even sure if that's the right way to put it) and honestly it just didn't pan out. I just wanted a little light/fun romance to balance out the other 4 books I was reading at the moment. 

So there are two parts to the book, the first part-the past and the second-the present. The past was perfect. I really thought I was on to something and that I had made a good choice when I decided to read the book. The portrayal of this young innocent child in love was beautiful. I wasn't skeptic at all (which is somewhat of a surprise). Deborah really pulled her character off. I mean even the part when she first finds out about sex (I had to mention it). Yes I really loved her reaction because it reminded me of mine so I connected with this young child. What amazes me even more is how the author portrayed Roanie's feelings for Claire. Because they had a 5 years age gap (this mattered because she was 9 and he 14... you get my point don't you?), had Roanie felt anything sexual towards Claire, that would have been completely wrong in my book. The author takes a different spin on his feelings, they aren't brotherly but they aren't sexual either  they have a hint of romantic but really she was the one person who saw beyond everything else and to him instead of all the other B.S.. so she meant the world to him, he would have done anything for her. 

After a while though the past just seemed too long to me, I wanted to get to the present and see their reunion and how things worked out. Well umm Ugh? Yeah that was my reaction to the present part of the book. It was extremely disappointing. After everything she had built up in the past, how she played the whole thing was just a big fat disappointment. 

For starters I didn't even like Roanie until near the end. He gave me the willies. Now I don't care what anyone else says but what he was doing was stalking. He knew everything about her, he had his people and inside contacts find things out. He once even went as far as to be parked outside her dorm and watch her. If that isn't stalking I don't know what the hell is. It was just extremely disturbing. Don't try to justify what he did with his feelings. A lot of creepy stalkers will think they love the person they are stalking so you cannot really make it sound any better, at least not to me. It is just not romantic. Hell if he loved her so much he might have contacted her at least once in the past 20 years. Aside from his stalker tendencies (for which he really should get checked) I hated how immature Roanie was acting. He was flaunting his money around and went as far as to try to buy Claire (at least that's what it seemed like to me). He never even tried to understand why Claire was so vary of the whole thing and fighting him! Where did the Roanie I grew to love from the past go??

(spoilers start here)

Let is move on to the ungrateful bastard, Matthew. WOW. I cannot believe how easily he turned on the man who had raised him. I really cannot. So Josh tells him that he has been looking for him for the past 20 years and he just falls for that? What about the time when the same guy denied his existence and was ashamed of him? Huh? I just. I just. UGH! 

And now the biggest bastard of all, Josh. I absolutely hated how Deborah played Josh. First the surprise that he was actually the father and then the fact that the author tried to tell us that he wasn't all that bad and had been looking for his lost son and was worried about him? Someone shoot him in the head for me pretty please? Never mind that he denied the existence of his child and let him stay in those horrible conditions for the first few years of his life. He also ignored his legitimate child because of this. The poor girl thought her father hated her for the first 10 years of her fucking life. Oh lets not forget he took advantage of an underage girl. Someone who treats a woman like that isn't worthy of any respect and don't you dare give me the Vietnam excuse. Look at Grandpa Joe if you need any reason as to why I won't accept that bullshit. 

I am just disappointed. At least I have Castle and The Dream Thieves to cheer me up. 


  1. I really like the sound of the bit set in the past. Maybe I'll just read that bit and skip the present xD Sounded like a good premise. 9 and 14 sounds a bit weird but I can see how that would be cute if done correctly. Great review!

    Laura @ What's Hot?

  2. bahaha you won't be able to because you'll want to know whether the two get their happy ending :P
    I actually don't have a problem with age differences so long as both the people are 18+ otherwise it's just weird. Like a 14 year old and a 18 year old NO?
    an 18 year old and a 22 year old YEAH!


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