This was a nice easy read, and has a generally uplifting tone to it, so it left me feeling fairly positive. The characters are well drawn, and there is enough character development to keep you reading. I did feel that the plot was a little forced in places. There are eight charms on the bracelet that Arthur discovers – and some of these have some interesting and entertaining stories. Some of them, however, are verging on unbelievable, and some are explained much too quickly, which felt like a little bit of a cheat. The real story, of course, is not about Arthur’s wife and where she got the charms, but about Arthur and how he grows and develops throughout the book. This is well done, but it still left me feeling disappointed that the story behind the charms wasn’t a bit stronger. It is very similar in nature to ‘The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry’ – in fact Arthur and Harold could almost be one and the same. But where Harold’s story genuinely touched and moved me, Arthur’s didn’t. Perhaps Arthur’s story is meant to be a bit more tongue-in-cheek and funny, but I think if there had been more emotion, it would have been a four-star book instead of just a three.
Title: The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper
Author: Phaedra Patrick
Source: Free review copy from Lovereading
Rating: 3 stars
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