Barbara O. (Maryland Heights, MO)
Who are we?
Rachel and Henry is a good read about family. Told from different generations, who you are and who you think you are might be two different things. The story slowly reveals different perspectives cleverly revealed over time. Family secrets revealed. Imagine being the last member of the family still living and discovering a different family than the one you thought you knew. Childhood perspectives viewed from an adult point of view. Good topic for discussion.
Doris K. (Angora, MN)
Henry and Rachel
This could be a depressing book except that it is so beautifully written I couldn't help but enjoy reading it. Starting out on page one when Henry describes himself with "cheeks full of ravines made by the rushing waters of years of experience" and continuing on with wonderful word choices the author tells a good story. Also the reader needs to realize this is based on letters written by real people. It is fiction but the characters are true to life.
This book would lead to some good book club discussions on the experiences that motivate people as they move through life.
Barbara K. (Brooklyn, NY)
Do We Really Know Anyone?
While it took some time to get into this novel, I forged ahead because it was beautifully written. I'm glad I did.
The reader is introduced to people who unfold a tale from their point of view and in the end the reader is now challenged with the question,"Do we REALLY know anyone"? Although I found this story to be infused with profound sadness, I would recommend it.
Sally D. (Racine, WI)
A Tale of Two Viewpoints
I am not finished with the book yet but my impression so far is mixed. The concept is very interesting. Basically the story of a relationship told from the viewpoint of the two participants. The fact that these two people are so incredibly different really makes one think about one's own relationships. These two characters were brought together from one brief and unexpected sexual encounter. They knew very little about each other and came from totally different backgrounds. After several years of refusal, Rachel finally agrees to marry Henry but there is no explanation as to why she changed her mind. While they spent a few uneventful years, after Henry plays a trick on Rachel in an attempt to make her come around to his ideas of child-rearing, Rachel decides to take all but her oldest child, James, and leave Henry for New York.
While there is a part of me waiting to find out the answers to some of the questions I have about these characters, I am finding the it starting to be very slow going. I will continue the book but find myself wishing the story would pick up the pace.
Mary Lou F. (Naples, FL)
Do you really know your family?
Very interesting concept - each chapter was the thoughts and doings of one of the characters. The way each character thought and acted about their family was very different for each one of them. Slow going at the beginning but as you got to know the different characters, you wanted to find out how their lives would end up.
Caryl L. (Williamsburg, VA)
Henry and Rachel
I liked this book. It mainly concerns the parentage and history of some of its characters. It is, overall a sad book - not a page turner, not a fast paced thriller. That said it is a beautifully written book and gentle reading. While the characters are flawed, they do come to life on these pages.
I found it hard to put down - not as in the aforementioned page turned, but as a vivid interest in the characters.
As the author will tell you, it "is a fiction but utilizes a series of facts, documents and stories from real life" In my mind, the book leaves me with unanswered questions which, I hope, Laurel Saville's next book will tell me.
Anna R. (Oak Ridge, TN)
When I started reading this book I had a hard time getting into the story. However, after about 40 pages I was hooked. Each chapter is the voice of a different character and each one helps the story to unfold. This is a different format and I looked forward to reading what each character had to say. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it.