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Book Review: Sweet Water by Christina Baker Kline

Updated: May 29

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Skeletons in the family closet seem to rattle around louder and louder over the years, until they are finally brought to light. Healing rarely, if ever, comes from hiding secrets away.

This seems to be the overarching theme of Sweet Water - a Novel by Christina Baker Kline. The story follows Cassandra (Cassie) Simon on her journey from NYC to her hometown roots in small town Tennessee, to unravel the mystery behind her mother’s tragic death. When she inherits land from a grandfather she’s never met, Cassie instinctively knows that a radical move to begin a new life in her mother’s childhood home will be the key to coming to terms with her loss, and finding a renewed sense of direction and purpose. Along the way she will learn about love, creativity and the power of forgiveness.

I had never read anything by this author before, and was pleasantly surprised. She held my attention, and created personalities that had genuine depth. By writing in the voice of two different characters, the story came to life from multiple perspectives. The reader is able to see how the actions of each family member had far reaching effects on the behavior and emotions of everyone else. I was actively interested throughout as to how it would end.

I have read other reviewers who felt it was kind of a non-ending, with many unresolved storylines. I have to say I agree. I can’t tell for sure if that was because the author rushed to finish, or if it was a deliberate choice to allow the reader to fill in the blanks and form their own conclusions. It did, however, leave me with a nagging feeling that it wasn’t quite complete.

Overall, though, I would recommend this novel. It would be a great vacation book, as it flows easily and effortlessly from chapter to chapter. Enjoyable.

Click Here to Read it for Yourself

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