A romantic, heart-wrenching tale of love against the odds from the Number One Sunday Times bestselling author
1930, Rajputana, India. Since her husband's death, 28-year-old photojournalist Eliza's only companion has been her camera. When the British Government send her to an Indian princely state to photograph the royal family, she's determined to make a name for herself.
But when Eliza arrives at the palace she meets Jay, the Prince's handsome, brooding brother. While Eliza awakens Jay to the poverty of his people, he awakens her to the injustices of British rule. Soon Jay and Eliza find they have more in common than they think. But their families - and society - think otherwise. Eventually they will have to make a choice between doing what's expected, or following their hearts. . .
-- Goodreads.com description -
First of all, I want to thank Netgalley and the publishers, Penguin Books (UK) and Viking, for providing me with an arc copy. I'm really grateful for this opportunity. I have received an advanced reader's copy in exchange for an honest review.
I requested this book because I'm currently in the mood to read romance stories and I have always enjoyed books or movies about India and/or Indian culture.
Unfortunately, this book and I did not click. After reading the first 20%, I started skim reading. In the end, I decided not to finish this book. This is not a decision I take lightly, but I don't think I would enjoy it more if I finished it.
Even though I did not finish Before the Rains, I will briefly review the part I did read.
Writing styles are a very personal thing, I've read books I really enjoyed but others really hated because of the writing style. One of these books that immediately comes to mind, is Nevernight by Jay Kristoff, which I personally loved but many of friends did not care for at all. Dinah Jefferies writing style really did not click with me, I found it too descriptive, more telling than showing. When I don't enjoy a particular writing style, it becomes a task to read a book. The last books I did not finish because of the same reasons were Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness and William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom! Both novels are considered classics and master pieces but I just could not finish them. Many people do enjoy them, so the fault lies with me. I feel the same about finishing Before the Rains. This does not mean you would not be able to enjoy it. Like I mentioned before, this is a personal preference.
The descriptions in Before the Rains are very repetitive. Eliza is a photographer and describes the subjects of photo's multiple times using the same adjectives over and over. Things like this, are why the writing style annoys me.
I read books to connect with the characters, if I don't connect with any of them, I will not enjoy the book. I tried liking the characters in Before the Rains, I really did, but they all felt so flat to me. Sadly, I didn't click with any of them.
Since I did not finish this book, I do not feel comfortable rating it, so I won't. I did not click with this novel but this doesn't mean you would not enjoy it. If the plot sounds intriguing, by all means, check the book out. A writing style is a personal thing, you either enjoy it or you don't. In this case I didn't but that doesn't mean you won't. This book actually has a 4.1 rating on Goodreads, so I'm definitely in the minority of people who did not enjoy it.
Have you read this book or are you planning to? Leave your thoughts down below!