Advance reader reviews of The Homecoming of Samuel Lake by Jenny Wingfield.

The Homecoming of Samuel Lake

A Novel

By Jenny Wingfield

The Homecoming of Samuel Lake
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' rating:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Published in USA  Jul 2011,
    336 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book

Buy This Book

Page 3 of 5
There are currently 34 member reviews
for The Homecoming of Samuel Lake
Order Reviews by:
  • Annie P. (Murrells Inlet, SC)

    An Edward R. Murrow subject - You Are There!
    The Homecoming of Samuel Lake is high on my list of all-time favorite books! It reminds me of The Story of Edgar Sawtelle in many ways: the rural setting, the practical people, the children, and a good mystery woven throughout the story.

    I found it very hard to put the book down, even when my family was complaining of famine in the kitchen and no one to pay attention to them. It was an effort to pull myself away from this beautifully written tale of a family, a town, and the intermingling of all their lives. Ms. Wingfield has done a wonderful job of catching local dialect and putting all the emotions of the people into words that gave us the feeling of being there and listening, rather than just reading about it. I am certain that my friends and fellow book club members will be as excited about this book as I am.
  • Sarah N. (Corte Madera, CA)

    I loved when Samuel Lake finally came home!
    When is Jenny Wingfield coming out with her next book? I thoroughly enjoyed this book. There were times when it was "hard to watch" yet, I could not put the book down. Swan Lake and Blade were two incredible characters that were easy to love.
  • Marie A. (Warner, NH)

    What's Not to Like?
    What's not to like in a book filled with traditions, family values, miracles, faith, integrity, unforgettable characters, the author's ability to weave a well-conceived story--and of course the forces of good and evil? I hated to see this book end; it was a page turner. Though tragedy and sadness play a part in the novel, the author adeptly presents her readers with hope for the characters and faith in their futures. Perhaps Wingfield has considered a sequel with Swan and Blade as main characters?
  • Viqui G. (State College, PA)

    The Homecoming of Samuel Lake
    This novel was a very satisfying and enjoyable read. It has been a long while since I've read a novel with such finely drawn, complex characters. As a reader you really feel like you could drive up to the Moses homestead and immediately know everyone sitting around their supper table. The Moses/Lake extended family has several conflicts and a great deal of tension builds up as the novel reaches its climax. Major themes in the book are: good vs evil, truths and lies (and something in between!) , family strengths and the power of love. It was poignant but not cloying. I recommend it heartily.
  • Kathy S. (Danbury, CT)

    The Homecoming of Samuel Lake
    This is one of the best books I've read in a long time. The first sentence drew me in, and I had a hard time putting down this book. Two families, relatable characters, the ins and outs of everyday life - with a miracle or two thrown in as a matter of course. Life is full of good and evil as depicted in this book, and faith can triumph against the odds.
  • Doris K. (Angora, MN)

    The Homecoming of Samuel Lake
    The author tells a fascinating story of two families, although neighbors, are completely different. Their lifestyles, child raising ideas and family ties offer great contrasts.

    Skillfully woven into the story is how these two families intersect and lives are changed. The story contains some violent acts thich are necessary to develop the character's personality. Although the story takes place in the '50's the needs and passions of people have not changed.

    I enjoyed reading this novel and will recommend it to my book club. I can imagine this book would lead to a good discussion for any book club.
  • Patricia L. (Seward, AK)

    Homecoming of Samuel Lake
    Jenny Wingfield author of The Homecoming of Samuel Lake chronicles a farm family dealing with the everyday challenges of raising children while circumstances with the adults go awry. Wingfield has deftly woven the story through her characters. Swan Lake, the pre-teen daughter of congregation-less preacher Samuel Lake befriends 9 year old Blade Ballenger, abused and speechless, yet communicative. Bernice a trophy wife to one man not so secretly aspires to rekindle her relationship with her brother-in-law Samuel. Ras Ballenger, violently abusive father and husband, methodically terrorizes his family, animals and neighbors while Calla, Willadee and Toy Moses invoke the family trait for truth telling as needed. This book is fast paced yet thoughtful. The Homecoming of Samuel Lake has elements of The Secret Life of Bees and To Kill a Mockingbird and is highly recommended.
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
Sign up, win books!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: A Man Called Ove
    A Man Called Ove
    by Fredrik Backman
    Reading A Man Called Ove was like having Christmas arrive early. Set in Sweden, this debut novel is ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Search
    by Geoff Dyer
    All hail the independent publisher! In May 2014, Graywolf Press brought two of long-revered British ...
  • Book Jacket
    Mrs. Hemingway
    by Naomi Wood
    Naomi Wood's latest novel, Mrs. Hemingway, is a fictionalized biography covering in turn writer...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Arsonist
by Sue Miller

Published Jun. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  167The City:
    Dean Koontz
  2.  116Tomlinson Hill:
    Chris Tomlinson

All Discussions

Win this book!
Win The Angel of Losses

The Angel of Losses

"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist


Word Play

Solve this clue:

E C H A Silver L

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.