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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.3 out of 5
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  • A rich immersion

    I loved this book; such wonderfully rich character development; every character so complex, I was so sad when it finished, such a satisfying and wise read.

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    1 person found this review helpful

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  • A great courtroom drama

    The Miracle Submarine is a new development by Korean immigrant Pak Yoo, who claims to be able to cure a variety of illnesses and diseases using pure oxygen. However, when the tank explodes during a session, the spotlight is shone on anyone who may have benefited from the accident… Miracle Creek is a book that has had a lot of hype surrounding it as shown by it’s Amazon post which boasts ‘the most anticipated book of 2019’. I have seen so many 5 stars reviews on Goodreads from friends and strangers that made me very excited to have this book in my TBR. This may have led to me having high expectations going in though which ultimately ended in some disappointment. The plot is certainly unusual for a courtroom drama and it’s a good premise – using a technology I had never heard of – a pure oxygen hyper chamber which is meant to cure a range of problems from infertility to autism. The premise was great and I liked the wide range of characters that the scenario introduced us to. The story also really delved into what it must be like for women who are mothers to children with extreme learning difficulties and illnesses, I also liked how it explored cultural expectations for all members of immigrant families. I liked how the book bounced me around trying to work out who was the perpetrator – there were so many red herrings and possible suspects that it was hard to guess. I guess my main problem was that it was a little drawn out in places. For example, in the court room the detective’s methods of suspicion is typed out 4 times in full (with little additions, as if on a whiteboard). This felt patronising to the reader and got tedious at times. Also the constant red herrings also got a little waring as time went on. What started out as a read that got me hooked eventually made me impatient to get it finished by the end. Overall, Miracle Creek is a good courtroom drama on an interesting subject, it just gets a little too drawn out in places. Thank you to NetGalley and Hodder & Stoughton for the chance to read the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Intriguing concept

    This was interesting, but ultimately a rather slow read, which I must confess to skimming. I liked the insight to an immigrant family's struggles, and into the problems faced by parents of children with learning difficulties and disabilities/illness, it was very thought-provoking. However, as a reader, the pacing was rather frustrating. This was a dramatic incident and those parts livened it up, but on the whole the narrative was stretched out far too long. I've come upon this in modern traditionally published works too often in recent years. Do the editors feel by encouraging the writer to stretch the books they can charge more? I don't know, I only know that as an editor and prolific reader I know when a story needs some livening up. Maybe it was that the writer, although she obviously felt for her characters, needed perhaps some more sophisticated means of establishing empathy in the reader for them - less can be more if you choose the right words. Writing well in one's own language is a hard skill to learn and maybe English is the writer's second language. This is just my opinion, and I can see others have enjoyed this insight into the minds of parents facing specific difficulties. Otherwise, a worthy read and an intriguing concept.

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