BOOK HUNGRY: learning to swim

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via phone. we post a review on our individual blogs the 3rd thursday of the month. click on their names above and enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

LEARNING TO SWIM by sara j. henry

what it’s about from amazon: 

When she sees what looks like a child tumbling from a ferry into frigid Lake Champlain, Troy Chance dives in without thinking. When she gets the child to shore she discovers that his name is Paul, he speaks only French—and no one seems to be looking for him.
Her determination to protect Paul pulls Troy from her quiet life in a small Adirondack town into an unfamiliar world of wealth and privilege in Canada and then in Vermont. Her attachment to him—and the danger she faces when she tries to unravel the mystery of his abandonment—force her to evaluate everything she thought true about herself.
Sara J. Henry’s riveting, award-winning debut will keep readers engrossed right up to its shattering conclusion.

my opinion:

karla chose this book, so i knew a few things before i even picked it up from the library. it would be dark, suspenseful, and sad. my initial impressions of karla’s choice weren’t wrong, but i also should have known i’d enjoy it.

it’s a story of an unconventional mother and son (in more spoiler-y ways than one). the beginning of the book surges into action and doesn’t stop. it’s relentless, but in a quiet manner, which turns a bit into a whisper during the middle, but takes off again at the end. most of us (minus karla) didn’t see that one coming. whew boy!

i thought this was a standalone novel, but during our conference call where sara called in to chat with us (!), she explained it’s just the beginning. the second one, A COLD AND LONELY PLACE, came out last month and if it’s anything like the first book and its full slate of fascinating side characters, it’s worth a read.

p.s. book hungry’s had a big month. first, we get to talk to the author of the book we just read! and second, we’re expanding our ranks. one blake leyers is joining us and she’s diving right in by picking our read for next month. initiation by fire!

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10 Responses to “BOOK HUNGRY: learning to swim”

  1. Karla Nellenbach Says:

    I like your review Abs. Mine turned into a bit of a rant, but well, that’s how I roll. :)

    • abby mumford Says:

      is it weird to comment on your blog post in the comments section of my blog post? well, i’m going to — your post really nailed what bugged me about troy and it was the v.mars comparison that did it. well, that and YOU hiding out in the bushes with night vision goggles “reading your ereader”. oh man, i can’t stop laughing over that story.

  2. Patty Blount Says:

    YES! I liked what you said about a whisper – a quiet relentless plot. Well said.

  3. Linda Grimes Says:

    Now I’m torn again. It’s so interesting to read all your different takes on the same book, but I’m not sure it makes it any easier to decide if I want to read it. *grin*

    • abby mumford Says:

      ha. sorry, grimes. i essentially just said the same thing on patty’s blog — we all have such different reviews, and yet there are startling similarities between them as well. i’d say you should add this to your TBR pile, but seeing as it’s the start of series, maybe wait until a few more are out before you begin…

  4. Kelly Breakey (@kellybreakey) Says:

    Great review Abby. Of course Karla guessed, anyone who sits in the dark for three hours wearing night vision goggles has a suspicious, twisted mind to begin with.

    For me, this book kept me entertained and that is what I want from a story. I finished it over a week ago and it is still resonating. Love it, hate it, but when a story can make you feel anything, even uncomfortable, so much so that is sticks, than it’s not a bad read in my opinion.

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