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Monday, April 29, 2013

Amity & Sorrow: A Novel

Amity & Sorrow by Peggy Riley. Oh. Em. Gee.

Amaranth is the first wife. Of fifty. She is happy in her large family until she discovers her husband's awful secret--one that even she can't forgive. She takes her daughters, Amity and Sorrow, and escapes in the midst of the fire in their temple. She gets as far as the Oklahoma panhandle when she falls asleep and crashes their car. A local farmer, Bradley, comes to their rescue and gives them shelter. As the girls begin to navigate in their world without their plural family, will they be able to learn basics, like how to live and to read? Or will they grasp on to their only known world and refuse to let go? Can Amaranth forgive herself for that which she blames herself? Can she start over for the sake of her girls--and ultimately for herself?

This novel was...it was...well, I feel that to call it outstanding would be to undersell it. It was one of the most beautiful, engaging, and addicting pieces of literature I have read of late. I would have been perfectly fine not leaving my house until I finished this book. I was so engaged with the story, with the heartfelt search for self that was written so earnestly and so thoughtfully. Riley is a genuine writer whose words on the page sing like a bird's sorrowful song. I was addicted to this book like a junkie.

I was astounded at the sociopathy of Sorrow but not surprised by Amaranth's desire to do whatever she could to protect her. I, at times, was floored at Amity's deep and abiding love for her sister, so much so that she was even willing to risk her life. My heart leaped for Amaranth when she set out to find peace in a new life, and I sat on pins and needles with them when they were forced to journey back to the compound. I was willing to stay up all night watching them to make sure they were safe.

In short, I loved this book.

I strongly suggest you add this to your list. Kindle version on left, hard copy on right.

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