Friday, August 07, 2009

Flowers in the Attic (YA/Adult)

Andrews, V.C. 1979. Flowers in the Attic. 389 pages.

It is so appropriate to color hope yellow, like the sun we seldom saw.

I don't know what to say about this one. I really don't. I'll start with why I picked it's all Leila's fault. It's her review, believe it or not, that made me pick this one up. Warning: if you read her review, there will be no surprises left. Is that a good thing? a bad thing? That's something you'll have to decide. You should also know that it is the best *bad review* of a book ever. So be prepared to laugh.

Did I like it? I'm embarrassed to say I read it all in one sitting. I can't say that I enjoyed it though. There were too many things about it that annoyed me. The use of italics. The descriptions. The dialogue. The characterization. The creepiness of it all.

What is it about? For those that don't know, it is about four children--Chris, Cathy, Cory, and Carrie--who spend three to four years (at least) locked up in a bedroom together (but at least they have access to the attic, right?) while their mother tries to ingratiate herself back into her daddy's good graces. Why is her father so disgruntled? Because his daughter became involved with--ran off and married in fact--his half-brother (which would be her half-uncle). So while they may all live in the same mansion, the children are being "hidden" from their grandfather. They're not hidden from their grandmother, however, a woman that makes the wicked witch of the west look like nanny material.

Why did I choose this cover? After all, there were plenty I could have chosen to highlight...well, it is so ridiculously very odd and creepy. But it is not the cover from the copy I read. I read the newish sun-dazzled one that shows Chris and Cathy ogling each other.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


L. Diane Wolfe 2:00 PM  

Considering your taste in books, yeah, this was an odd selection!
I read this book when I was fourteen years old. Fourteen! Totally inappropriate. Yes, the whole incest thing is creepy.
The things that go through some people's minds...

L. Diane Wolfe “Spunk On A Stick”

Unknown 4:10 PM  

I'll forgive you for your slip in your impeccable good taste. Your review made me laugh. (And I could see how Leila's could drive you to read the book...)

Vanessa Book ♥ Soulmates 4:21 PM  

Hmm, I actually just bought this book not too long ago. I think I may have to bump it up in my TBR pile. lol.

Thanks for sharing!

Unknown 5:39 PM  

Aww the horrible dialogue, descriptions, etc. are what make it so fun! FitA is practically Shakespeare compared to most of her other books (although most of them were written by a ghostwriter). I don't recommend any of the sequels (they're not even fun/bad), but you should check out the prequel, Garden of Shadows, which is pretty ridiculous.

Monique 6:40 PM  

I am surprised that this one was labeled young adult. I would have never put it in that category. It is much to graphic for that. Sometimes I wonder about people that do the labeling.

Unknown 10:32 PM  

I'm surprised an avid reader such as yourself is just reading this book that I call classic trash. LOL I got in trouble for reading it in school when it first came out. I was in 6th grade and someone's mom called the school to say I had it with my books coming home from school and what were they thinking to have students reading this...blah, blah, blah! My mom let me read anything. I eventually read the entire Chris and Cathy saga, up through where they "marry" and have their own family.
I found the writing style annoying also, especially the dialogue.

Unknown 10:33 PM  

I forgot to mention that I have a bunch of great books I'm giving away as a build up for BBAW. Hope you'll stop by and check it out.

Michelle Fluttering Butterflies 3:57 PM  

Ha! This is one of my favourite TERRIBLE books ever. And oh my god, that cover. Wow.

Allison 5:09 PM  

Maybe I am the odd one out, but I loved "Flowers in the Attic". The reason her books were so original was because they were so twisted. I think it really showed how messed up they became - due to the neglect and abuse from their Grandmother.

The whole series is pretty great, and explains a lot. (Though if the incest creeps you out - it only gets worse in the following Dollanganger series). I believe any of the V.C. Andrew novels after the Dawn & Heaven series were written by a Ghost Writer and have tamed down a LOT.

I can see why the newer ones are written for young adults - but yes, I never would have given this to my young adult and said "hey read this!" Even though it was the first "adult" novel my mother gave me to read when I was in eighth grade.

Ashley 11:12 PM  

I've loved this book since I was 13 or so when my aunt got me into V.C. Andrews books by giving me Dawn. I can't say that it's a piece of brilliant literature but I think it's what could be labeled as "good trash".

I've never seen that cover before and it's quite strange! Great review!

The Obsessive Reader 11:20 PM  

Did they make a movie out of this? I remember reading Missing Girl where there's five sisters and some stalker guy is watching them the whole book deciding which one he wants to steal. It was a good writing but it really freaked me out even if it didn't show anything horribly inappropriate. If this is really graphic then I probably wouldn't like it and their is a whole series on it?

Ceri 4:03 PM  

Haha! I read the five of these books a few years ago and couldn't put them down. They're so bad but so good. I guess you could call them my guilty pleasure books.

Unknown 4:23 AM  

Im not sure what's wrong with you guys, or more likely what's wrong with me, but this is my ALL-TIME FAVOURITE BOOK!!!
I began the series last year (I would have been 14 or 15 at the time) and have gradually read all of the Dollanger series. I fell in love with the quirkiness and originality of the story.
Yes, I know some parts are a bit gross, but they weren't too bad and besides that's what made it interesting to read. The situation the children are placed in, is one that many struggle to relate to, but I think I have understood why the children acted the way they did. (Im talking about in all aspects of the story, not just the incest) Sometimes the characters would annoy me, but dont they in all books? I mean what's the fun in having a perfect character, with no faults that you can sit there and scrutinise and point out what they should have done and what you would have done, or at least what you think you would have done.
The movie was a disappointment however.
I recommend all of you to read it! It will be a book that you will never forget, it will scar you forever, but trust me it will be totally worth it! As Edward Cullen says to Bella in Twilight: 'You are a drug to me.' That is all I can say about the best series of all-time! :)

Unknown 4:35 AM  

"Flowers in the Attic WAS based on a true story. Virginia was a young lady when my dad made arrangements to take Virginia to the University of Virginia hospital for treatment. While she was there, she developed a crush on her young doctor. He and his siblings had been locked away in the attic for over 6 years to preserve the family wealth. Obviously she cut the time back [in her novel] to be more believable. That area of the country has a lot of very wealthy people. I do not know who they were."

Anonymous,  10:51 AM  

I think the story was brilliant. and so many people having a reaction just proves it more. I think books(ahem! stories) can't be classified. They just have to move you in good or bad both ways.Challenge your beliefs even if they are the one's you dont believe in.

Rodney,  12:29 AM  

I liked the book when I read it more than twenty years ago, and I still like it; though I don't admit to that publicly. I wonder why we all feel so guilty about liking this book, anyway.

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