“The House Of Velvet And Glass” Is All Smoke And Mirrors


“The House Of Velvet And Glass” was a beautiful novel that spanned from Shanghai to the decks of the Titanic to the streets of Boston.  As Sybil grapples with the death of her mother and sister as a result of Titanic’s sinking, she learns something about herself she never imagined could have existed.  The writing was immaculate and descriptive, however, the story was a little slow at parts.  I would characterize this as a deliberate and steady paced book, but even now, I can’t quite describe anything interesting about this novel.  While it was well written, it was underwhelming and simply did not leave a lasting impression.  The characters were all tolerable, but no one really stood out.  Howe spent too much time on the uninteresting storyline of Sybil’s brother being kicked out of school and chased by a loan shark, letting the supernatural Titanic aspect fall to the wayside.  The last few pages contained an interesting twist, but there wasn’t enough build up to make it powerful.  This was a meandering book that I wish I had skipped.

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