Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The Waters & The Wild

The Waters & The Wild by DeSales Harrison
Random House Publishing Group: 4/3/18
eBook review copy; 320 pages
ISBN-13: 9780812989540

The Waters & The Wild by DeSales Harrison is a recommended mystery - for the right reader.

First Father Nelson Spurlock has a young women visit him, looking for something her father may have sent him. Later Spurlock receives through the mail the confession, of sorts, from a man he doesn't know. The writer is Daniel Abend, a psychoanalyst and single father living in New York City and father of a teenage daughter, Clementine, the young woman who must have been Spurlock's visitor. Abend apparently had an affair years earlier with a woman in Paris, presumably the mother of his daughter. When one of his patients commits suicide, Spurlock delivered the eulogy, which is what brought the man to Abend's attention. After this death, however, his daughter disappears and Abend begins to receive threatening messages, which lead him to examine his past.

While the writing is beautiful in this novel and the mystery is intriguing, the presentation and the prose overwhelm the plot. The beginning starts out strong, but after that the sheer barrage of language eliminates some of the pleasure of following the twists and turns of the story. The narrative mostly moves along at a crawl and I began to lose patience with the florid language of the prose and snail's pace of the plot. It must also be said that at times it was difficult to follow which character was talking as they weren't presented from the start as unique individuals.  At the conclusion, it is an interesting story but, for me, a struggle to finish. 2.5 rounded up for the right reader.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of the Random House Publishing Group.

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