Title: The Underside of Joy
Author: Sere Prince Halverson
Genre/Audience: Contemporary, adult
Publication: Dutton, 2012
Source: For review
Hi guys. I have a guest review from my mother today who is helping me out. Due to some personal problems and heartbreak in my life, which some of you already know about (thank for your support and love), my reading has slowed down temporarily while I attempt to get my life back in order. My regular reading and posting should resume in the next week or two, so my apologies in advance. In the meantime, please enjoy this review from my mom. 🙂
Summary (from the book jacket): To Ella Beene, happiness means living in the Northern California river town of Elbow with her husband, Joe, and his two young children. But one summer day, Joe breaks his own rule – Never turn your back on the ocean- and a rogue wave descends, drowning not only the many, but also his many secrets.
For three years, Ella has been the only mother the kids have known and has believed that their biological mother, Paige, selfishly abandoned them. But when Paige shows up at the funeral, intent on reclaiming the children, Ella soon realizes there may be more to Paige and Joe’s story.
My Thoughts: This is the debut novel for this author, but it is so well written, it’s hard to believe this is her first effort. The promo literature that came with this book for review stated that “it will grab you from the first page.” Typical statement from the publisher, but in this case, so true. I liked these characters right from the start and the town of Elbow and the little cottage Ella and the kids live in sound wonderful. The story is believable and told without bitterness, even though it would have been very easy to slant things and make Paige out to be a horrible monster who is ripping these children from their stepmother for her own selfish reasons. I totally enjoyed this and look forward to this author’s next book!
My Rating: 4.5/5