Thursday, February 12, 2009

Review: The Gate House by Nelson DeMille

I received The Gate House by Nelson DeMille from Miriam at Hachette Books near the end of 2008. In all the moving and such, I didn't get a chance to read it until now.

This was my first Nelson DeMille book. Here's the description from the author's website: When John Sutter's aristocratic wife killed her mafia don lover, John left America and set out in his sailboat on a three-year journey around the world, eventually settling in London. Now, ten years later, he has come home to the Gold Coast, that stretch of land on the North Shore of Long Island that once held the greatest concentration of wealth and power in America, to attend the imminent funeral of an old family servant. Taking up temporary residence in the gatehouse of Stanhope Hall, John finds himself living only a quarter of a mile from Susan who has also returned to Long Island. But Susan isn't the only person from John's past who has reemerged: Though Frank Bellarosa, infamous Mafia don and Susan's ex-lover, is long dead, his son, Anthony, is alive and well, and intent on two missions: Drawing John back into the violent world of the Bellarosa family, and exacting revenge on his father's murderer--Susan Sutter. At the same time, John and Susan's mutual attraction resurfaces and old passions begin to reignite, and John finds himself pulled deeper into a familiar web of seduction and betrayal. In THE GATE HOUSE, acclaimed author Nelson Demille brings us back to that fabled spot on the North Shore -- a place where past, present, and future collides with often unexpected results.

This book is a sequel to The Gold Coast but I didn't know that until I was far into the book. There were plenty of flashbacks and information included about the back story that I did not need to have read the first book. In fact, I wonder if I had read it, would it have been too much 'remembering'.

I thought the story was very slow starting. Probably the entire first half of the book could have been edited into about a third of what was written. It wasn't bad enough that I wanted to put it down, but definitely dragged. However, once the action started, it moved well, was interesting and kept me completely hooked.

It's not your typical 'who-dun-it' mystery - there's never any question about what happened. But it's more of a question on what will be the consequences.

One other thing about the book - I didn't quite like the main character, John Sutter. He was quite arrogant, snobby and just plain rude. More so than would be necessary for the book, in my opinion. Course, I'm sure there are guys out there just like him.

I am giving the book a 3.5/5 stars rating. If you've read it, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the book.


Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this book and John Sutter's sarcasm, but I've read a lot of reviews that thought The Gate House was too long. I think I'm in the minority.

Diane said...

Michele...I listened to the unabridged audio version of this book, and while I loved the sarcasm, after a while it got a bit much.

IMO, they could have shortened this book significantly. I preferred Gold Coast, much more. I believe I rated this one 2/5.

I enjoyed your review.

Alyce said...

I thought the sarcasm was funny, and that the main character was one of those people that you love to hate. I don't think I would have enjoyed it as an audio book (like Diane) but just reading it I thought it was entertaining.

Michele at Reader's Respite said...

I've got this one, but haven't yet read it. I'm a huge DeMille fan, myself, and I especially love John Sutter. But then again, I'm a pretty snarky person myself, so I can see why it might not appeal to all people.