Wednesday, May 08, 2013

The Banks of Certain Rivers

banksWow! I've been reading some pretty crappy novels lately, and am glad to have had the opportunity to read & review this one - The Banks of Certain Rivers by Jon Harrison.

At first, I wasn't sure how I felt about Neil, a father of a teenage boy, whose wife was in an accident which led her to become a vegetable in a comatose state. Neil started seeing his mother-in-law's nurse, behind his son's back. I can understand that he wants to move on with his life, as his wife would never come out of her coma. As the story went on, I became more and more understanding of his situation, and no longer considered him cheating. If I ever end up (knock on wood) as a vegetable, I would want my husband to move on, providing that it was for sure that I wouldn't be able to rebound back out of the coma. I also wouldn't want to be kept alive if I were a vegetable, but that's not what I am talking about here. I was immediately drawn in to this story and wanted to know how it all played out. It wasn't predictable and could have gone in different directions, which had me guessing throughout the novel. Was he going to lose his job after the video of him went viral on youtube? Would his son Christopher accept his apology? Where was Chris after he ran away? I am glad that everything worked out the way it did, in the end. The story all came together nicely.

The supporting characters were very likable and realistic. They all drew me in as we met them in the book and was drawn into the book right from the prologue - wanting to know more, as the novel was set up very well.

I liked the use of the emails from Neil to Wendy at the end of some of the chapters. I liked how it added a little extra to the story by giving us some more private/personal thoughts. I was sad to see the emails end once the email account that Neil's friend set up (so that he wouldn't know the password) expired and the emails he was sending bounced back.

I also liked the way the story wrapped up in the end in the last chapter, giving you information about what the characters were now up to. I hate it when a novel leaves you guessing at the end, but this story doesn't do that to you, and I appreciated that.

I am curious about the title - I am not sure what it had to do with the story, so if there was a reference to The Banks of Certain Rivers, maybe I missed it. There was a river near Neil's house, that is mentioned several times throughout the story.

I learned a lot of new words throughout this novel, I was constantly using the kindle dictionary. It's not necessarily a bad thing, the words were used in the right context, but for a normal reader, this would maybe be a little annoying. To give a few examples of words I looked up: beatific, hemochrome (which the Kindle library had no definition for), propensity, gait, detritus, heralded, seismic, just to name a few.

I really loved this novel and it was well written. I was able to connect with all the characters and the storyline was realistic. I enjoyed reading this and recommend this novel. I cannot wait to see more by Jon Harrison.


SapphireBlue said...

Thank you for the review. This book is on my "to-read" list.

Teena in Toronto said...

I enjoyed it :)

g-girl said...

I don't know how you can read books you're not into!! I'm glad this one seemed to have made up for the previous ones!