The Poison Tree

I stayed up til 3am today to finish this book. Not so much because it gripped me so much that I had to stay up to finish it, but more that it seemed to have been lying around the house for days and it seemed to be taking me too long to read it. In my defence, I have a sore shoulder at the moment and holding a heavy book like this one is pretty hard going and I wanted to get it done so I could revert to reading on Charlotte (my Kindle) until after my shoulder surgery next week. Charlotte being a much easier ‘book’ to hold! Anyway, I digress…

‘The Poison Tree’ tells the story of studious, clever (but dull) Karen who meets Biba, a free spirit (and a rich one at that!) and becomes completely enamoured and besotted by her, her brother and her lifestyle.  Biba is not an especially nice person and is selfish, egocentric and believes the world revolves around her but you can understand why Karen holds her in such high regard and awe, as does her own brother, Rex.  The whole Biba-Karen-Rex thing is creepy and doesn’t sit too well with the reader but this is what makes the book so  good.  It has been described as an atmospheric, Gothic novel and I tend to agree.  The plot is fairly simple and the book doesn’t really go anywhere but the little things that happen – which are not so little really – have such a huge impact and there’s a pretty cool twist at the end!  Enjoyable but not in my Top 10 of 2011 reads so far.  If you read it, let me know what you think…

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