As y’all know, I tend to err on the side of overpacking. It’s better to be prepared, right? But this trip, I made a conscious effort to cut down on extraneous items and really stick to the essentials. Well, my version of the essentials anyway. And believe me – as I attempted to stuff everything back into my suitcase to begin the journey home last night, I realized that my version of the essentials is still quite large.
One thing that definitely made the cut? My trusty Kindle! Although I still love a good (library) book, the Kindle is just so much more convenient on long trips. I inherited my Mom’s speed-reading abilities, and it isn’t practical to lug three or four books through a month in England!
After mowing through another food memoir (seriously love that genre), I started in on “Drowning Ruth” by Christina Schwarz. For as much as I love memoirs and non-fiction, I also love a good novel. And this certainly was a good one!
Schwarz tells the story of two sisters, Amanda and Mathilda, and the people that they encounter. After Mathilda mysteriously drowns (this isn’t really a spoiler, as this happens in the first chapter), suspense swirls around Amanda and Ruth, Mathilda’s daughter. What happened to Mathilda? What is wrong with Amanda? Why is Ruth acting so strangely?
I found myself tearing through the book, hungry for answers to these questions and more – I’d say that’s the mark of a good book! The book is set in the early 1900′s, but the characters seem realistic and believable. Schwarz does a great job of staying true to the historical time period, but also making you forget that these people aren’t living in modern times. I became utterly lost in the story, swept up by the characters. In fact, I was sad to see it end even though I was dying to learn what the ending would be!
This was a quick read, a little heavier than some summer beach reads but still not overly weighty and dense. The perfect book for a long trip. Even though I didn’t love the ending, I would still recommend checking it out if you enjoy novels with character development and suspense!