Reviews for Primrose Street
This review is done by Shilpa, from her blog Living in Fiction, Nov 29, 2018.
When I started reading this book, I liked it okay.. with the maple trees and a seemingly non-descript society coming together to save a tree. They all seemed like simple people with extremely un-happening mundane lives.. but as the pages turned I was introduced to the people behind the masks of the ones that appeared in the society meeting! Each chapter focused on a family/ character but the characters appeared in and out of other chapters. How their lives intertwine and yet they hold masks in front of the rest. All of them have secrets to guard and perfect lives to show case.
This show of a perfect life and being too busy does more harm than good. I have always felt this but this book pushed me to think about it and talk about it to others. I am linking the post: Secrets are poison.. Don’t hold ’em back any more!! just in case you want to check it out.. 🙂
The most beautiful thing about “Primrose Street” is the writing style. Never has I imagined that I would read a page-long description of a patient watching doctor washing his bloody hands after a surgery with such rapt attention! In fact, the description of these ignorable scenes is what set this book apart for me.
Getting to know each character brought more meaning and understanding to the lives on Primrose Street. Each of the events I had read before I knew that character’s story held more significance with each passing chapter. I did get confused a few times and had to go back to ensure I was not mixing the lives as there were so many characters and all of them were equally important.. there was no place for a main character. A main character, if any, was the street itself.
I absolutely adored this book and highly recommend it!
“It takes me a long time to read books, but not this one. I experienced many emotional moments. You managed, Ms. Reed, to create something that helps others look at the world and themselves honestly. Many displays of courage are in this book. I hope I can let this book lead me to do the same. Thanks so much for the gift of Primrose Street.”
Bruce. P.D., Musician
“Reading Primrose Street is delicious exercise for the heart. I put it down so many times as I needed to look away and settle the emotions that this masterfully written story brought up in me. I needed to digest and integrate the rich and powerful impact it had on me each time I entered its thrall. Primrose Street is raw and real and deeply engaging, powerful and wonderful. I recommend it to anyone with the desire to see more, feel more and move past the fear that keeps us from living in awareness and with responsibility.”
Len Ramsay, B.A., M.B.A., S.P., Psychotherapist, mindfullife.ca
“The dark underbelly of Primrose Street forces us to ponder our own hidden secrets. Those wanting to walk through the clandestine lives of those hidden behind the partially curtained windows should open these pages. Beware the cord it may strike.”
J. Anthofer, P.Eng, Photographer
“Held together by the maple trees, the residents of Primrose Street have their own hopes, experiences and secrets. This book brings them all together in a very perceptive way.
It is a book of our time, dealing sensitively with the difficulties still of same sex relationships and the reaction to these, of the effect of domestic abuse on children as well as partners.
It is very well written and holds the reader’s attention throughout. It is not hard to identify with one or more of the residents, which gives the book much of its undoubted appeal.”
Douglas Osler , reviewer
“I am so impressed by how artfully woven the story line is in Primrose Street. There is a Steinbeckish quality to the story and the writing. Although I like Primrose Street better. Ms. Reed has an open and egalitarian mind and heart.”
Alice Millen-Reese, B.A., Real Estate
“Life on Primrose Street is busy – joys and sorrows, surprises and secrets, betrayal and new love all happen under the watch of the maple trees that line the street. A network of friends, family members and neighbours are relative strangers to each other, mostly living their own lives and not thinking much about each other – until they start to let each other in.
There is a particularly heartbreaking story line that sees the catastrophic effects in a family where the parents care more about their reputation than their children. In fact, lack of communication is something that the Maple trees see again and again. Speaking of the trees – they’re presented as almost sentient, not able to communicate to the people, but certainly with each other, and they become their own character, watching the residents from above. It’s an interesting juxtaposition, of the trees, intensely connected to one another through their roots, alongside the people below, with their fractured relationships.
It’s a really interesting look at the complexities of human nature and the way we relate to each other – and very beautifully written. The only issue I had was keeping track of all the characters, as there were a lot of them – but other than that, I really enjoyed it. I look forward to reading more from Reed in the future.
Megan Bidmead , reviewer
“The plot drew me in and I was instantly intrigued to read about the secrets behind Primrose Street. Enjoyable read!”
A D , reviewer
“Primrose Street is a wonderful novel full of interesting characters. I was drawn into their lives, hopes, and drama. English saga at its best. Thanks “
Rhonda Lomazow , reviewer
“This is a very sweet story that reads like a series of vignettes about life in a small town. The characters are delightful and offer a snapshot peek at a less complicated-seeming world that I found endearing and enjoyable to lose myself in for an afternoon (or two). It’s a short book and a fairly quick read, but offers lots of food for thought since the eponymous street almost has a life of its own, due to the richness of the characters’ relationships with each other via their co-existence on Primrose Street. It was a lovely and thoroughly pleasant book – which was a marvelous change of pace from all of the action/adventure/thriller/conspiracy/danger books that seem to be predominating the summer reading lists!”
Jill Franclement , reviewer
“This is a book that’s very suitable to read in a group and discuss the various interpersonal relationships, the togetherness of a neighborhood, it’s pros and cons on everyday life.
This is a thoughtful foray into the lives of people in various stages, how such a tight knit community can be a great support for some while also be stifling for others who just don’t want to conform.
The writing is beautiful, the pacing is a bit slow and the too many characters did get confusing at times, but it was still a fascinating read and very realistic in its portrayal.”
Sahitya Kosuru , reviewer
“A fascinating and realistic portrait of a community, a book composed by the voices and experiences of different people.
It’s well written, fascinating and moving, an insight into the everyday life of people.
Anna Maria Giacomasso , reviewer
“It stayed with me; they stayed with me – the stories of “ordinary folks” who have something they are living through and, as such, something to reveal to us. Ms Reed wove together joys, sorrows, relationships and struggles in a way that was both informative and profound. The effect has lingered in ways that continue to draw me to find parallels all around me. I did not want to put the book down; this will be a book i will return to many times over.”
Marion Boyd, B.A., M.A., BRE, Grief Counselor
“A colourful group of characters drew me into this thoughtful story of a group of neighbours, and kept me reading right until the end! Twisted together and pulled apart, new connections being made; it was a well woven tale yet seemingly believable. It was so real in parts that I cried, the human experience was well documented. Reading Primrose Street had me thinking about my kids, my parents, and my own relationships. The subject matter is provocative, and makes Primrose Street a very interesting glimpse into the minds of people with different lifestyle choices and experiences. I will be recommending this book to my book club, and I’m sure it will spark a lot of lively discussion!! ”
Jen Hawkins, Nurse, photographer