Review: The Switch

The Switch
The Switch by Diane Whiteside
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

The Switch was a really bad book. I absolutely loathed this book. I knew five pages in that this book was going to be boring and, in that aspect alone, I was not disappointed.

The book was excessively repetitive on topics that weren’t really all that important to the story-line. An example is Beth’s continuous grief over Dennis. I get it. This was set two months after 9/11 and he had supposedly died when the World Trade Center collapsed. It would be reasonable for a person to grief and to obsess over the loss of their friend in such a traumatic way. But it didn’t seem like she was even mentioning it as part of the grief. It seemed like a ploy by the author to make Beth more sympathetic. The same goes for Sean’s character with the continuous rehashing of his dead wife’s aneurysm and stroke history–and how it was so horrible that she didn’t want to have sex with him because of how extreme her pain was. There was never any real depth added to Beth and Sean’s feelings toward Dennis and Tiffany.

There also wasn’t any depth to the feelings between Beth and Sean. They used one another to act out fantasies, ones that had already been described in depth. One chapter spent more time describing Beth’s fantasy (in a sort of “flashback”/italicized way) of having sex with a conquering hero than it did on Beth doing anything in real life. Sometimes it seemed like there was more time spent by the characters masturbating about their fantasies with one another than they ever actually spent with one another.

It’s also worth noting that the fantasies themselves were really, really awful. Beth had a fantasy of conspiring with the Germans against the French Resistance during World War II, which would then lead to her kidnapping and rape by the Resistance, which would turn into a D/s sex scene. Yes, a white author wrote a biracial character having a fantasy that involved helping a government that preached vehement hatred of anyone who wasn’t 100% white. Though Hitler technically named Japanese persons “Honorary Aryans”, there were still laws against inner-marriage and there were still potential acts of discrimination perpetrated against them. That made that particular scenario more than a bit disturbing. Several of Beth’s fantasies dealt with potentially racist ideas.

This is one of those books that after you read it, you want to take a shower–and not a cold one. It has a very high ick factor which, when combined with it’s very high boring factor, makes it practically unreadable. I would recommend finding something else to read.

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Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.

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