The Rain Watcher – Review

Many thanks to St. Martin’s Press and Netgalley for the chance to read and review this novel early.

Image result for the rain watcher

The Rain Watcher by Tatiana de Rosnay was one of my most anticipated reads for the end of 2018 due to my love of the author’s previous book, Sarah’s KeySarah’s Key is solely responsible for spurring my love of World War II Historical Fiction, and is on the list of my all-time favorite reads. It was a book I read and loved long before I was an avid reader, a book that stands out in my mind years after finishing it, and a truly beautiful and moving story. I expected nothing less from The Rain Watcher, a novel that caught my eye thanks to the gorgeous cover, talented author, and title.


The Rain Watcher is a powerful family drama set in Paris as the Malegarde family gathers to celebrate the father’s 70th birthday. Their hidden fears and secrets are slowly unraveled as the City of Light undergoes a stunning natural disaster. Seen through the eyes of charismatic photographer Linden Malegarde, the youngest son, all members of the family will have to fight to keep their unity against tragic circumstances.

In this profound and intense novel of love and redemption, De Rosnay demonstrates all of her writer’s skills both as an incredible storyteller but also as a soul seeker.

Unfortunately, The Rain Watcher did not live up to my expectations in the slightest. I actually wish I would have stopped reading before I made it to the halfway point in this story. Being an optimist, I kept waiting for something to happen after the slow build, and before I knew it I was nearly halfway through the novel. At that point, it felt like a waste of time to stop reading and a waste of time to continue. For the sake of writing a review, I decided I needed to understand the whole story, whether it was good or bad.

The first issue with this novel for me was the narrative style the story was told in. I felt like it took away from the reading experience by not allowing me to connect with the characters in the way I hoped to, especially in a book by this author. Further, the writing style made the story feel as if it were going in many directions with each member of the family and their respective stories, rather than focusing on the main characters exclusively. This gave the implication of many things happening, but when I evaluated the story, nothing seemed to transpire.

On the whole, this novel was incredibly boring. I actually fell asleep twice while reading and other times would find my mind wandering, forcing me to go back and re-read, only to realize my mind had wandered to more interesting thoughts once again. I wanted desperately for an event to happen to catch and hold my interest, but sadly, it never did.

In my opinion, readers who are familiar with Paris streets and landmarks will feel more interested and eager to read the story. For someone who isn’t familiar with the city, the long descriptions of places in relation to others became tedious and overdone. This also kept the storyline mainly relating to the flood of the Seine from being as interesting as it could have been.

Overall, I didn’t really understand the point of the story. I felt like the author was trying to push an agenda that is dear to heart, though it is one I don’t prefer to have shoved down my throat while reading. I wish this had been indicated in the blurb, rather than sprung on me through the course of the book. I also wish something exciting had happened! It was a shame to wait and wait and be entirely let down.

This novel has its place and will surely find readers who relate to the family story at the heart of the book. I only wish I could be one of those people. The Rain Watcher releases October 23rd.

Purchase on Amazon!


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