Rated of 5
by Ken Favell (Mukwonago, Wisconsin)
Sweeping Up Glass is a winner!
Christine Wall's Sweeping Up Glass has to be one of the finest novels that I've read this year. This is a story filled with heart, most of it generated by its wonderful narrator Olivia Harker Cross, an honest hard-working Kentuckian. Olivia's grit and determination reminded me of another Kentuckian Gertie Nevells, Harriette Arnow's main character in The Dollmaker.
From its opening pages I knew that Sweeping Up Glass was going to be a special story. The reader finds Olivia distraught at the heartless killings of wolves on her land. The carcasses are left with one ear cut off. Olivia's determination to find the guilty party amidst the continuing sacrifices she makes for her family set up what is to follow.
I think the novel's most memorable relationship is the one between Olivia and her young grandson Will'm. She's raised Will'm like a son ever since her daughter abandoned him for better things in Hollywood. Olivia's love for Will'm knows no bounds. Thanks to Olivia's vigilance we see him growing into a kind, sensitive, compassionate young man.
Sweeping Up Glass is an absorbing story of grief, hardship. love and hate with characters that ring out with the resonance of truth. I loved it! A perfect selection for reading groups.