Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Review: The Sound of Glass by Karen White

Members of the Vise Library were selected to review The Sound of Glass.  We received a copy of Karen White's book for an honest review.

About the book:

It has been two years since the death of Merritt Heyward’s husband, Cal, when she receives unexpected news—Cal’s family home in Beaufort, South Carolina, bequeathed by Cal’s reclusive grandmother, now belongs to Merritt.

Charting the course of an uncertain life—and feeling guilt from her husband’s tragic death—Merritt travels from her home in Maine to Beaufort, where the secrets of Cal’s unspoken-of past reside among the pluff mud and jasmine of the ancestral Heyward home on the Bluff. This unknown legacy, now Merritt’s, will change and define her as she navigates her new life—a new life complicated by the arrival of her too young stepmother and ten-year-old half-brother.

Soon, in this house of strangers, Merritt is forced into unraveling the Heyward family past as she faces her own fears and finds the healing she needs in the salt air of the Low Country.
Merritt has had a lot of surprises thrown at her lately.  First her husband died (he was a firefighter that didn't make it out of the burning building), second because her husband died she has inherited a big house (that her husband's grandmother owned, but passed away) down south and lastly her step mom and half brother have shown up to live with her.  All of this is hard for her because she is used to being on her own.  Her mother passed away when she was young and became estranged from her father when he married Loralee an now he is gone as well.  Under the pretense of financial woes, Merritt (reluctantly) accepts Loralee and her half brother (Owen) into her new house.  Merritt's husband, Cal, has a brother named Gibbes who isn't happy about Merritt getting the house.  They have a frosty relationship to put it mildly.  Again, Merritt likes to be on her own.

As Merritt learns more about the house and about the Cal she never knew.  You realize that Merritt blames herself for Cal's death and you learn that their relationship may not have been the best.  Loralee has a secret that she isn't willing to tell Merritt yet.  Gibbes and Merritt start to warm up to each other and discover that Gibbes Grandmother Edith had a secret that tore her family apart.  

This book has so much to it: a few mysteries, love, loss, multiple generations of abuse & guilt, coincidences not really bring coincidences, secrets that border on the line of right and wrong and people (re)discovering who they are.  Karen White has been one of my favorite authors for awhile.  I love how she weaves multiple stories with the past and present reflecting each other.  I enjoy how things aren't what they seem on the surface.  Merritt goes through such a dramatic change and it is good to see.  In the beginning she was holding on to so much shame and hurt that she just closed herself off from everyone.  She learns about the brother she never took the time to know and eventually lets Loralee and Gibbes in.  She realizes that it's okay not to do things on her own and is better for it.  The suspense of the underlying mysteries and why Cal sought her out in the first place had me on edge.  This is a great read for anyone really.  Karen White is always an enjoyable read!  Our copy will available for checkout when the book publishes!

PS Karen White will be making an appearance at Parnassus Books in June!  I'll be there!
Buy the book:

About the author:

I grew up being a voracious reader and it was a natural step to turn my interest to writing. I have published 18 award-winning and bestselling novels including my June 2014 release, A LONG TIME GONE, which debuted on the New York Times bestseller list at number 24.

I write what others have termed "grit-lit"--southern women's fiction, as well as a contemporary paranormal mystery series set in Charleston, South Carolina. All of my books are set in the US South, and feature a female protagonist at a crossroads in her life. 

I live near Atlanta, Georgia with my husband, two children, and the cutest Havanese dog, Quincy, whom readers may recognize as General Lee in the Tradd Street series.
My upcoming book, THE SOUND OF GLASS, will be released by New American Library, a division of Penguin Random House Publishing Group, on May 12, 2015. It's set in the beautiful town of Beaufort, deep in the South Carolina Lowcountry. 

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