Book Review: The String Diaries by Stephen Lloyd Jones
The String Diaries
Series: The String Diaries #1
Author: Stephen Lloyd Jones
Published: July 1, 2014
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 3.5 stars
A family is hunted by a centuries-old monster: a man with a relentless obsession who can take on any identity.
The String Diaries opens with Hannah frantically driving through the night — her daughter asleep in the back, her husband bleeding out in the seat beside her. In the trunk of the car rests a cache of diaries dating back 200 years, tied and retied with strings through generations. The diaries carry the rules for survival that have been handed down from mother to daughter since the 19th century. But how can Hannah escape an enemy with the ability to look and sound like the people she loves?
Stephen Lloyd Jones’s debut novel is a sweeping thriller that extends from the present day, to Oxford in the 1970s, to Hungary at the turn of the 19th century, all tracing back to a man from an ancient royal family with a consuming passion — a boy who can change his shape, insert himself into the intimate lives of his victims, and destroy them.
If Hannah fails to end the chase now, her daughter is next in line. Only Hannah can decide how much she is willing to sacrifice to finally put a centuries-old curse to rest.
This book had so much potential! A complicated plot that had nowhere to go but up! An interesting premise and characters that were willing to go along for the ride … and it just all fell flat. No real explanation; which y’all know is going to annoy the ever living stuffing out of me! And then major cheating. I know that sounds childish, but it’s true. You don’t get to change the rules willy-nilly, and expect me to just accept it. The multiple timelines added some nice dimension, but the old one didn’t offer any good resolution and the modern one just cheated. Plus, I was left unsatisfied by the motivation of the villain … if I wanted high school drama, I would have shopped in the YA section. I wasn’t planning on continuing the series, but I bought the sequel by accident. This book offered enough potential, that I think I’ll give the sequel a chance.