Sunday, December 2, 2012

The River Witch by Kimberly Brock

Title: The River Witch
Author: Kimberly Brock
Format: Paperback, 246 pages
Pub. Date: April 6th 2012
Source: Goodreads First Reads


Four stars.

I received this book through Goodreads First Reads.

Needing a break from a more than stressful life, Rosalyn Byrne rents a house for the summer on Manny's Island, Georgia. Forced to walk away from a career as a ballerina from a car accident & a miscarriage, this little island is the perfect place to just disappear for a while. But that old house holds secrets of its own. The Trezevants own that building, & not all of them are willing to let go so easily. There's Damascus, a little girl named for the river who has a mission to grow pumpkins, her father, Urey, who's not always around, old Nonnie who claims that Rosalyn is the one calling all the alligators to the island with her hoo-doo. Together, all of them will learn, change, grow, but will Rosalyn ever come to terms with her past?

First of all, this cover is beautiful. To be honest, I judged this book by its cover, & I am very glad I did so.

Now, for what's on the inside of the pretty wrapping. I was stunned to find out that this is a debut novel. This is a very striking start, & I hope Ms. Brock produces more in the future.

This book is a beautiful work of Southern fiction. I'm not usually a fan of the genre, admittedly, but if all of them were written like this, my shelves would be stocked with them.

Her words effectively paint a picture to the extent that I felt I was watching Damascus & Rosalyn's stories unfold, not just reading some text. Each of the characters was detailed & relatable, & by the time the book was over I thought I truly knew them.

I am pleasantly surprised that this book didn't end at all how I thought. On about page fifteen or so, I thought I had it figured out. I was off. Very off. And that is a great thing.

This book definitely isn't a light read. It's full of emotion & drama. I admit that I cried, which I also wasn't expecting. It's very powerful, & even in the happier parts there is an underlying tone of haunting & despair. In my opinion, that makes it even more beautiful.

The only negative for me was that I felt it ended too abruptly. It lazes along at a good pace, like a summer day in Georgia, but then all of a sudden everything unravels (or ravels, depending on the character) & then the story's over. It was a bit rushed for me.

But all that aside, this book was a solid 4/5 stars. I recommend it for women & fans of Southern fiction.


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