January 10, 2015 | In: 2015, Blogging, Books, Jan Ellison, Reviews

Book Review: A Small Indiscretion


Summary:A Small Indiscretion fixes an unflinching eye on the power of desire and the danger of obsession as it unfolds the story of one woman’s reckoning with a youthful mistake.

At nineteen, Annie Black trades a bleak future in her washed-out hometown for a London winter of drinking to oblivion and yearning for deliverance. Some two decades later, she is married to a good man and settled in San Francisco, with a son and two daughters and a successful career designing artistic interior lights. One June morning, a photograph arrives in her mailbox, igniting an old longing and setting off a chain of events that rock the foundations of her marriage and threaten to overturn her family’s hard-won happiness.”


A while back, I signed up to do a book review for a book that I knew almost nothing about at the time. The idea was to get a bit out of my comfort zone, read something that I might like from a new author, and maybe start doing this sort of thing more regularly.

Good news, everyone! I did get out of my comfort zone and read something from a new author. The bad news is that I didn’t really care for the novel, which is no fault of Mrs. Ellison — I just don’t think that I’m the target audience for this novel, as the Amazon and Goodreads reviews for this novel are very positive. The author shows the ability to craft a solid story, albeit a bit predictable at points and a bit meandering at one or two other points.

The novel is written from a first person perspective, which can be hit or miss for me anyway, as an open letter to the main character’s son. There is some back and forth between her past in London and her “small indiscretion”, and her current life in San Francisco with her initially estranged husband. It works as the open letter format, describing to her son the events immediately following his car accident and continuing, eventually revealing that he had taken off after recovering, which is part of what seemed to provoke the letter.

Some people talk about how they couldn’t put it down, but for me, it was a struggle to get through. It was well-paced, but a bit too wordy in some parts, going too flowery on the descriptions of some aspects and characters. Still, it isn’t a bad book, and I’ve already given it to someone who loves this sort of novel, and she is enjoying it so far.

Final opinion: I’d give this book a B-/C+, because while it is an example of good writing, it is just not to my tastes. However, I hope it sells well and that Ellison keeps writing, because in a sea of mediocre writers, it is refreshing to see someone who can actually write getting published.

I do encourage you all to check out Ellison’s website, which can be found at http://www.janellison.com/ and decide for yourself what you think of her, and of the book. While you do that, I’m going to see if any fantasy or sci-fi books want to send me a copy to read, because that’s more like my thing.

If you want to buy this book, and have Amazon kick a little bit my way, visit this link: A Small Indiscretion by Jan Ellison. The book comes out on January 20th, and as always, Amazon’s price is lower than the list price.



(Disclaimer: While I am being compensated for this post, the opinions are my own. I mean, if I was being paid to write a false opinion, I probably would’ve been far more enamored in this post. :P)

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Writer, blogger, and TV reviewer. Ketogenic eater, heathen, and king of jokes that only make me laugh. Click the picture for more!