Book Review: Petals on the Wind (Dollanganger #2) by V.C. Andrews

September 6, 2014

Petals on the Wind by V.C. Andrews
Series: Dollanganer (#2) 

Genre: Classic, Gothic


They were such brave children to withstand such suffering. Such clever children to escape such terror!
For Carrie, Chris and Cathy, the attic was a dark horror that would not leave their minds, even while they built bright, promising new lives. Of course mother had to pretend they didn't exist.
And Grandmother was convinced they had the devil in them.
But that wasn't their fault. Was it? Cathy knew what to do.
She now had the powers she had learned from her beautiful mother. She knew it in the way her brother still yearned for her, in the way her guardian touched her, in the way all men looked at her.
She knew it was time to put what she knew to the test. To show her mother and grandmother that the pain and terror of the attic could not be forgotten... Show them.
Show them—once and for all.


Spoiler - read on if you wish, but you've been warned - *fades into the shadows*

They were free, free from that dark attic, free from that old grandmother, and free from their mother who once loved them so dearly. 

We meet the three (née four) children; Christopher (Chris), Catherine (Cathy), Carrie and once Cory, on a bus to freedom. As the hours on the bus passed on, Carrie was getting worse with the arsenic poison inside her and was in need of a doctor. They were greeted by a kind black woman who cannot speak but can hear and use sign language or a notepad and pencil to communicate. Henny. Henny took the three children to the doctor she works for, Paul Sheffield. 

Paul takes the three children in as his own, by nursing Carrie to health, buying them new clothes, toys, etc, and enrolling them in school. Now as time passes, Paul gets attracted to the 15 year old Cathy and Cathy has the same intimate attraction towards Paul (he is like 30 or 40 by the way), so she seduces him until he gives in. This scene was definitely not my favorite, I was so grossed out that I would force myself to continue on listening until it ended. (Since I listened to the first half of the audiobook and continued reading the other half of the book).

I don't hate this book, and I don't love it either. It was the time when I was eager to know whether the books were just like the two movies.

As the book follows Cathy and her life with her abusive dance partner, Julian, who later on becomes her husband who she doesn't love but later finds out that she does love him while on his deathbed. This woman has major issues. Like seriously.

Years pass and Cathy has been keeping track of her mother and her whereabouts, and secretly plans her revenge against the mother she once loved.
Part one of revenge plan, seduce stepfather (Bart Winslow, her mothers husband)
Part two of revenge plan, impregnate oneself with stepfathers baby
Part three of revenge plan, confront mother in front of guest at Christmas party.

Smart girl that Cathy. Using her beauty and her body to get her revenge on her mother, who no longer looks as good as she did 12 years go.

As I was reading this book at around 2am in the morning, I suddenly felt goosebumps as the mother; Corrine, turns out to loose her mind and go crazy. I never thought these kind of simple scenes would scare me a little but it did. I was definitely scared. With that being said, I have a feeling that Cathy is going to become as crazy as her mother. Despite all that love gives and receives from her brother and sons, she's slowly turning into her mother.

Petals on the Wind is a compelling second edition to the Dollanganger series. It's filled with every detail of what goes on in that crazy little mind of Cathy's, and how she can love just anyone, even if they rape her.

It's a recommend series to those who enjoy this gothic feel of abuse, rape, incest, death, and indecisive love affairs.

I'm looking forward to reading the next book of the series very soon.

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