Tuesday, June 20, 2023

This is Where it Ends by Cindy K Sproles Book Review

About the Book:

How long is a body expected to keep a secret?

When Minerva Jane Jenkins was just fourteen years old, she married a man who moved her to the mountains. He carried with him a small box, which he told her held gold. And when he died fifty years later, he made her promise to tell no one about the box or the treasure it contained.

Now at ninety-four, Minerva is nearing the end of what has sometimes been a lonely life. But she's kept her promise. Even so, rumors of hidden gold have a way of spreading, and Minerva is visited by a reporter, Del Rankin, who wants to know more of her story.

As an unlikely friendship develops, Minerva is tempted to reveal her secret to Del. But the truth of what's really buried in the box may be hidden even from her.

You can read an excerpt here.

My Review:

In the end, this is a touching inter-generational story. Getting there was slow going, however. I felt the plot was more suited to a novella length. I admire Sproles adding enough character thought and repetitive memories and background material to make the novel the length it is.

The story takes place a century ago and Sproles has set the dialogue in deep vernacular, especially the main character, elderly Minerva. Even her thoughts are given in dialect but sometimes inconsistently. I am not very familiar with the dialect and was puzzled when Minerva thought about maters in one paragraph and then in the very next paragraph thought about going out to get some tomatoes. (1333/4175) Surely they weren't the same, then.

This is an interesting novel about growing old, maintaining secrets, exploring memories, enduring misunderstandings and having questionable experiences. It is also about change in character, most profoundly seen in the initially grouchy Minerva. I do wish there had been a more clearly presented faith message.

This is a novel for readers who like a narrative predominantly representing character ruminations. There is some suspense and a surprise villain. It is touching in its ultimate message of family solidarity.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

About the Author:

Cindy K. Sproles
 is the author of What Momma Left Behind and the cofounder of Christian Devotions Ministries. A popular speaker, Cindy teaches at writers conferences across the country and directs the Asheville Christian Writers Conference in North Carolina. She is the executive editor of ChristianDevotions.us and freelance editor for Iron Stream Media. Cindy has a BA in business and journalism and lives in the mountains of East Tennessee with her family.

Revell, 288 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

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