written by Claire Kells
published by Dutton, 2015
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Did I enjoy this book: I loved this book. I couldn’t put it down. It’s possible I shunned my parenting duties, asked Husband to order takeout, and spent the entire evening sitting in my favorite reading spot. I think the kids slept in their clothes last night . . . But I digress.
I can’t say enough good things about this book. It’s got perfect flow–the right amount of back-and-forth, the right intensity. The story doesn’t come together too quickly or too slowly, and though it’s pretty obvious which man Avery will end up with, the hows and whys are less predictable. The prose is lovely. The characters can be a bit cliche at times (I mean, Colin ought to have SOME flaws, right?), but it didn’t bother me too much. In sum: this is the best book I’ve read in a long while.
“As he pretends to doze, the snow sneaks through cracks in the roof, settling on our heads and shoulders. It reminds me of a finely tuned performance: nature’s silent display of beauty, wonder, and merciless power.”
“He must’ve brushed his teeth after that coffee, which I know is a weird thing to think right now, but it streaks across my mind anyway, a grain of comfort in the chaos.”
“Or maybe it’s just the accumulation of things, the dutiful progression of time marked by the dutiful collection of meaningless possessions.”
Would I recommend it: Absolutely.
About the book – from Goodreads: An adventurous debut novel that cross cuts between a competitive college swimmer’s harrowing days in the Rocky Mountains after a major airline disaster and her recovery supported by the two men who love her—only one of whom knows what really happened in the wilderness.
Nineteen-year-old Avery Delacorte loves the water. Growing up in Brookline, Massachusetts, she took swim lessons at her community pool and captained the local team; in high school, she raced across bays and sprawling North American lakes. Now a sophomore on her university’s nationally ranked team, she struggles under the weight of new expectations but life is otherwise pretty good. Perfect, really.
That all changes when Avery’s red-eye home for Thanksgiving makes a ditch landing in a mountain lake in the Colorado Rockies. She is one of only five survivors, which includes three little boys and Colin Shea, who happens to be her teammate. Colin is also the only person in Avery’s college life who challenged her to swim her own events, to be her own person—something she refused to do. Instead she’s avoided him since the first day of freshman year. But now, faced with sub-zero temperatures, minimal supplies, and the dangers of a forbidding nowhere, Avery and Colin must rely on each other in ways they never could’ve imagined.
In the wilderness, the concept of survival is clear-cut. Simple. In the real world, it’s anything but.