The Back of the Book
Having unexpectedly lost her husband and lacking the means to support herself, Josie Di Santi and her two daughters take refuge in the small town of Mill River, to live with Josie’s aunt, Ivy. The sisters, Rose and Emily, are inseparable growing up – until a shocking tragedy tears them apart.
Years later, Rose and Emily return to Mill River for the reading of their mother’s will, where they learn that Josie would do anything to force their reconciliation: the sisters must move into neighbouring houses for the summer and work together to locate the key to Josie’s safe deposit box, which contains their inheritance. And so, left with no choice, Rose and Emily reluctantly begin their search. But in a place known for its magic and miracles, little do they know that an even greater treasure awaits them . . .
This is a book that took some time for me to get into – you know the sort that you give yourself at least until you get past page 50 before you put it down for the first time. The one thing that gave me the extra push was that the publication date was looming and I was asked to post my review on this day (not set in stone thanks to the lovelies at Sphere!).
Yet another book that jumps from past to present is here in my lap and I cannot put it down. Way past the page 50 mark and I hooked entirely. The Di Santi sisters are quite a couple of characters both together and alone they really do shake things up. This book has most definitely reaffirmed that making assumptions and jumping to the wrong conclusion really can mess things up.
Mrs Materialistic with the ideal marriage, home and life – or so one would think. With a turbulent past that has sadly shaped her current life and possibly future Rose is on the war path to finding the buried treasure. With her brilliant son at her side and loathed sister next door Rose in effect locks herself away from the world and only comes out when she feels ‘calm’. What it takes to make her feel that ‘calm’ is shockingly heartbreaking as it eventually leads to a tragedy that nobody should have to face.
With nothing but disdain Rose tends to her sister and neighbours with a very long spoon. However she shows her soft side with her aunt Ivy and son Alex. If only everyone else was treated with such tenderness Rose would find it a lot easier to live in Mill River. She does not want to be there for long nor does she want to get to know any of the people who ‘never change’.
As with everyone Rose has a lot going on in her life and there is a point that even when you think you cannot stand her any more you as reader will want to slap her and then help her.
As she wafted into Mill River Emily bought with her not only her trusty Gussie-pup but an air of happiness and freedom. The polar opposite to her sister Emily looks kindly on the Mill River way of living and tends to love thy neighbour as one ‘should’. DIY queen that she is, Emily rolls up her sleeves and just gets on with life as if staying in her old home town was what she intended to do all along.
Although the olive branch she put out to her sister has been broken it is blatantly obvious that this hurts her and she wants her sister back. However being just as stubborn as her sibling next door cruel tricks and public brawls seem to be the way forward.
Going back to Emily’s entrance into town this is one girl you would not think hangs on to the past as she travels like a hobo with the clothes on her back and a few other worldly goods. But as with everyone else in the world something is on Emily’s mind and it is the reason why she and her sister do not get along.
Firstly I have to say – I want an Aunt Ivy. Not only does this elderly dame know how to have a laugh but she has many levels of serious that her advice rings true from start to finish. She is there for both of the girls throughout their tragic ordeal and is quite a substantial character in the story. Of course Ivy has her own back story but that is something that you will just have to find out.
By the time I reached the end of this book not only did I almost drown from shock and drop the book whilst reading in the bath my heart melted. This is a story that as mentioned before reaffirms that jumping to conclusions and making assumptions can just make trouble. Not only that but it reminds the reader that family really does mean everything and if you have the chance forgive now and work the rest out later.
There are a couple of other characters in the book which really do sizzle things up and you will no doubt find out when you pick up this book. Once I got over the initial unsure stage and blew past page 50 this story had me hooked and as I said almost drowning in the bath to finish it.
The Mill River Redemption was sent to me by Sphere as an ARC. My review contains only my opinion and nothing written has been influenced due to the book being a gift.