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At the Water's Edge
by Sara Gruen


Overview - "NEW YORK TIMES" BESTSELLER In this thrilling new novel from the author of "Water for Elephants, " Sara Gruen again demonstrates her talent for creating spellbinding period pieces. "At the Water s Edge "is a gripping and poignant love story about a privileged young woman s awakening as she experiences the devastation of World War II in a tiny village in the Scottish Highlands.  Read more...

 
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More About At the Water's Edge by Sara Gruen
 
 
 
Overview
"NEW YORK TIMES" BESTSELLER In this thrilling new novel from the author of "Water for Elephants, " Sara Gruen again demonstrates her talent for creating spellbinding period pieces. "At the Water s Edge "is a gripping and poignant love story about a privileged young woman s awakening as she experiences the devastation of World War II in a tiny village in the Scottish Highlands.
After disgracing themselves at a high society New Year s Eve party in Philadelphia in 1944, Madeline Hyde and her husband, Ellis, are cut off financially by his father, a former army colonel who is already ashamed of his son s inability to serve in the war. When Ellis and his best friend, Hank, decide that the only way to regain the Colonel s favor is to succeed where the Colonel very publicly failed by hunting down the famous Loch Ness monster Maddie reluctantly follows them across the Atlantic, leaving her sheltered world behind.
The trio find themselves in a remote village in the Scottish Highlands, where the locals have nothing but contempt for the privileged interlopers. Maddie is left on her own at the isolated inn, where food is rationed, fuel is scarce, and a knock from the postman can bring tragic news. Yet she finds herself falling in love with the stark beauty and subtle magic of the Scottish countryside. Gradually she comes to know the villagers, and the friendships she forms with two young women open her up to a larger world than she knew existed. Maddie begins to see that nothing is as it first appears: the values she holds dear prove unsustainable, and monsters lurk where they are least expected.
As she embraces a fuller sense of who she might be, Maddie becomes aware not only of the dark forces around her, but of life s beauty and surprising possibilities.
Praise for "At the Water s Edge"
Breathtaking . . . a daring story of adventure, friendship, and love in the shadow of WWII. "Harper s Bazaar"
""
A gripping, compelling story . . . Gruen s characters are vividly drawn and her scenes are perfectly paced. "The Boston Globe"
A page-turner of a novel that rollicks along with crisp historical detail. "Fort Worth Star-Telegram"
Powerfully evocative. " USA Today"
""
Gruen is a master at the period piece and this] novel is just another stunning example of that craft. "Glamour"
A captivating tale. " Us Weekly"
""
Compulsively readable . . . a rich, beautiful novel . . . at once a gripping love story, a profound examination of the effects of war on ordinary women, and a compelling portrait of female friendship. Kristin Hannah
Utterly winning. " The Miami Herald"
""
A compelling, enthralling read, a novel which captivates and rewards, paying off in a series of emotional and narrative twists . . . comfort reading of the highest order. " The Globe and Mail"
""
A super steamy love story. " Good Housekeeping"
""
Unique in its setting and scope, this impeccably researched historical fiction is full of the gorgeous prose I ve come to expect from this author. Jodi Picoult
Gruen] conveys the lure of the Scottish Highlands. . . . "At the Water s Edge "captivates with its drama, intrigue and glimpses of both the dark and light of humanity. "BookPage"

"From the Hardcover edition.""

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780385523240
  • ISBN-10: 0385523246
  • Publisher: Spiegel & Grau
  • Publish Date: November 2015
  • Page Count: 416


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Historical - General
Books > Fiction > Literary

 
BookPage Reviews

Book Clubs: Calling the tune

Set in London during the late 1700s, Katharine Grant’s debut novel, The Marriage Recital, is a tale of money, matrimony and music. In this provocative period piece, four fathers—newly rich men hoping to acquire social cachet—scheme to marry their daughters off to aristocratic husbands. They enlist a music master to train the girls at the pianoforte in preparation for a recital, at which potential husbands will be present. The fathers believe the combination of musical accomplishment, feminine charm and family fortune will draw suitors to their daughters. It’s a plan that seems foolproof, but when they purchase a pianoforte for the girls’ training from ill-tempered instrument maker Vittorio Cantabile, their scheme—and their daughters’ reputations—could be ruined. A gifted writer with a flair for detail and dialogue, Grant brings London’s ballrooms and back alleys to vivid life in this titillating story of seduction and corruption (published in hardcover under the title Sedition). It’s a glittering work of historical fiction that readers will find hard to resist.

UNDERNEATH THE HOOD
Wayne Harrison’s accomplished debut novel, The Spark and the Drive, is a compelling coming-of-age story set in Connecticut in the 1980s. The narrator, 17-year-old Justin Bailey, forgoes college to work at Out of the Hole, a local auto shop. He finds comfort in the logic and consistency of car repair, which stand in stark contrast to his rocky home life. His mother is an alcoholic, and his father left the family after coming out of the closet. The shop’s owner, Nick Campbell, is a crack mechanic, incredible driver and attentive husband to Mary Ann, his gorgeous wife. In them, Justin finds a surrogate family. When the couple lose their baby, life veers off course. Nick’s work suffers, and Mary Ann retreats into herself. Justin scrambles to help his boss, even as he fights a growing attraction for Mary Ann. An intense, passionate tale of love and loss, this is a book with the makings of an American classic. Harrison takes readers on an unforgettable ride.

TOP PICK FOR BOOK CLUBS
Sara Gruen (Water for Elephants) delivers another hypnotic work of historical fiction with At the Water’s Edge. Set during World War II, the novel follows Madeline and Ellis Hyde, who flee the States and head to Scotland in the wake of a scandal. Ellis’ father, Colonel Hyde, refuses to give him a penny of the family’s money. Scheming with his friend Hank, Ellis decides to search for the Loch Ness monster, a quest wherein Colonel Hyde failed. In the Scottish Highlands, Hank, Ellis and Madeline encounter local villagers who view them as intruders. Madeline slowly comes to love her new home, befriending two local women. But as Ellis and Hank continue their search, new tensions surface, and she struggles to keep her bearings. A moving and suspenseful page-turner, this atmospheric novel is rich with authentic detail. 

 

This article was originally published in the December 2015 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews