Run, Rose, Run is as endearing as everything else associated with Dolly Parton, the musician, actress, and philanthropist. The suspense element lends a great diversity to the proceedings, even if it’s a character study about three different personalities navigating their way through the Nashville scene rather than a thriller. Despite its length, it’s a delightful, quick read – a page-turner with short chapters.
Run, Rose, Run is a light-hearted account of one girl’s ascent to success. It’s a classic Cinderella story, and thus nuance and complexity (as well as a classic Cinderella story. The book isn’t hesitant to bring the muck beneath the glitz of Nashville, but it could have thrown a few more stumbling blocks in AnnieLee’s path.
It is a thriller about a young singer-songwriter on the rise and on the run, willing to do whatever it takes to survive, from America’s most beloved superstar and finest storyteller.
Every song has a narrative. Despite her strict upbringing, the rising star sings about it in her lyrics. She’s on the run. Find a future and let go of the past.
She’s arrived in Nashville to grab her destiny. The area is also where she might return to the darkness she escaped and be eradicated.
Because so much of Run Rose Run is devoted to AnnieLee’s country music career, the story’s crime and thriller elements take a backseat, surprising given James Patterson’s participation. While AnnieLee’s journey to Nashville and early days of rough sleeping include a few encounters and near misses with dangerous and shady characters, the trouble she is fleeing remains implied and largely intangible until near the end of the book, when the peril and action are significantly ramped up. When AnnieLee’s past catches up with her, there are many revelations and violence as she resolves to fight for herself, and other characters are drawn into the conundrum. These later sequences are classic Patterson and should please readers who picked up Run Rose Run expecting a simpler thriller.
The mysteries are thrilling and well-planned, but they aren’t the book’s primary focus. You’ll be taken aback, root for our heroes, and pray they find safety.
It was a lot of fun to read Run, Rose, Run. The book will appeal to Parton and women’s literature fans with thriller and mystery aspects, as opposed to those seeking more of Patterson’s usual fare.