Friday, August 22, 2014

Karen White's Newest Another Absorbing, Atmospheric Family Drama

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

Nine years ago, Vivien Walker Moise fled the Delta, vowing never to return.  That was before her disastrous marriage, before the miscarriage that brought her to her knees, before she became an addict, dependent on pills just to get through the day.  Now, with nowhere left to go, 27-year-old Vivien returns to the one place she knows she'll always be received, if not exactly welcomed—Indian Mound, Mississippi.  If anything can heal her, it will be the tender ministrations of the beloved grandmother she left behind almost a decade ago. 

Soon after arriving, Vivien receives shocking news:  not only has her grandma passed away in her absence, but her estranged mother is now living on the family estate.  Vivien has some choice words for the parent who abandoned her, not that it matters—plagued with dementia, Carol Lynne Walker Moise doesn't recognize her daughter, let alone remember the hurt she caused her.  As if things aren't bad enough already, Vivien also learns that human remains have been unearthed on the Walker property.  Unable to rest, Vivien throws herself into finding out to whom the bones belong and how they came to be hidden in the dark, rich soil on her family's land.  As she discovers puzzling secrets from the past, Vivien realizes the truths they reveal could be the key—not just to solving the mystery, but also to healing her own battered heart. 

A multi-generational novel featuring all my favorite elements (mystery, romance, family secrets, a Southern setting, etc.), A Long Time Gone by Karen White offers a vivid, compelling story about one woman's quest to heal the hurts of her past.  Absorbing and atmospheric, it keeps the reader's attention through complex characters, smooth prose, and enough twists to keep you guessing.  The back-and-forth-in-time format did get confusing at times, but overall, I found this to be an engaging and enjoyable read.  

(Readalikes:  Reminded me of Kate Morton's books and others by Kate White)

Grade:


If this were a movie, it would be rated:


for language (no F-bombs), violence, mild sexual innuendo/content, and depictions of alcohol/drug abuse

To the FTC, with love:  Another library fine find

1 comment:

  1. This one reminds me of the only Karen White book I read. I would read this one. It caught my interest.

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