My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I received a free copy of this book from Brown Book Group in exchange for an honest review, thank you! I also want to thank Brown Book Group for letting me participate in the "The Mill River Redemption blog tour"!
Josie DiSanti moves after losing her husband in a fire that burned down the house to the little town of Mill River with her two small children, Rose, and Emily, to live with her aunt Ivy. As they grown up the girls are inseparable but a terrible accident tears them apart. Years later they return to the town for the reading of their mother’s testament. They learn that Josie will do anything to reconcile her two daughters. The sisters must move into neighboring houses during the summer and work together to find Josie’s safe deposit box which contains their inheritance...
I got a chance to read Darcie Chan's “The Mill River Redemption”, her second book after “The Mill River Recluse”. I have not read the first book, but I don’t feel that you need to, even though I must say I am a bit tempted.
This is not the usual book I go for. But I felt intrigued when I read what the book was about. About a small little town, a town where everyone knows everyone and two sisters that have to return to fulfill their mother's last will to be able to inherit. But nothing is easy; they haven’t spoken to each other for years and something putting two people together that are angry with each other can cause blowups.
In the book, we follow Josie in the 1980-90s building a life for herself and her children parallel with her children as grownups coming back to down and trying to find the key to the safe deposit box. I liked it at the same time you get to know the people in the past you also get to know the as grownups and in the end, the past story reveals why they are estranged.
Rose and Emily are very different, Rose is superficial and Emily is down to earth. And there we have my biggest problem with the book. Emily is the good and Rose the bad daughter. The story is written so you will feel for Emily always, it is she who got hurt, and it is she who always does the right thing. After a while it feels like everything Rose does is to hurt everyone around here. Of course, it could be the alcohol talking, she is an alcoholic, but I don’t buy it all the way. By always making it Rose’s fault then the book loses a bit of credibility because not everyone is perfect and not everyone is bad. And I feel that the book had been better if they both had been portrayed with flaws instead of just Rose.
But besides that, I mostly enjoyed the book. It was a bit weird reading about Claudia and Kyle in the book, at first I didn’t understand why there were chapters about their life in the middle of the story about Emily and Rose but I figured that their story had something to do with the first book and I was right.