Rich Again
Anna Maxted
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Buy *Rich Again* by Anna Maxted online

Rich Again
Anna Maxted
St. Martin's Griffin
464 pages
December 2009
rated 3 of 5 possible stars

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Rich Again is the story of the Kent family. Jack, the patriarch, is a self-made man. He lost his first wife - and first love - in an accident just before they were set to adopt their second child. The first child, daughter Claudia, was very young when her mother died. Jack remarried a woman who was also self-made, but he didnít realize it. Innocence gave birth to Jackís second child, and also deeply resented Claudiaís place in their lives. Emily, the child of Jack and Innocence, is a spoiled little girl who canít seem to grow up.

The book goes back and forth between time periods and between characters, making it a bit difficult to follow. I canít think of more unlikeable characters and, in the case of Ethan and Mark, more unbelievable. Ethan and Mark show up later in the book, and it will spoil the surprise for you if I tell you any more about them now, but I will tell you this: I canít imagine anyone liking them.

Claudia is sort of the heroine of the story, though wishy-washy and meek - without any truly positive traits at all. Emily is a self-absorbed party girl, Innocence the hardnosed, self-centered bitch, and Jack a cold businessman. None of the characters have depth or any other facets Ė they are quite uni-dimensional.

The story itself is implausible, and Maxted doesnít do a good job of creating the suspension of disbelief. I know, for example, that werewolves and other supernatural creatures do not actually exist, yet Patricia Briggs does an excellent job of creating a world so believable that I forget that fact. Maxted doesnít accomplish that with this book. The subplot of a vendetta feels forced rather than frightening, hard to believe that a family could be nearly destroyed by one man.

If youíre already a fan of Anna Maxted, you might as well read Rich Again. It isnít a terrible book, just not a particularly good one. It also isnít funny, as some of her other books are.

If you are not already a fan, please begin with Running in Heels or Getting Over It - both are much better examples of her writing.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Barbara Sharpe, 2010

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