Thursday, June 25, 2015

Review: The Sound of Glass by Karen White

Title: The Sound of Glass   
Author: Karen White    
Published: May 2015, NAL  
Format: Hardcover, 432 pages   
Source: Publisher  

The New York Times bestselling author of A Long Time Gone now explores a Southern family’s buried history, which will change the life of the woman who unearths it, secret by shattering secret.

It has been two years since the death of Merritt Heyward’s husband, Cal, when she receives unexpected news—Cal’s family home in Beaufort, South Carolina, bequeathed by Cal’s reclusive grandmother, now belongs to Merritt.

Charting the course of an uncertain life—and feeling guilt from her husband’s tragic death—Merritt travels from her home in Maine to Beaufort, where the secrets of Cal’s unspoken-of past reside among the pluff mud and jasmine of the ancestral Heyward home on the Bluff. This unknown legacy, now Merritt’s, will change and define her as she navigates her new life—a new life complicated by the arrival of her too young stepmother and ten-year-old half-brother.

Soon, in this house of strangers, Merritt is forced into unraveling the Heyward family past as she faces her own fears and finds the healing she needs in the salt air of the Low Country.

My thoughts: This is the first book I've read by Karen White and all I can say now is, what took me so long to pick up this author's work? I really enjoyed this one and will certainly be reading more of her books as soon as I can fit them in!

This is a multi-layered, multi-generational tale that sweeps you up and doesn't let you go. The story is told from alternating viewpoints, that of Merritt and Loralee and, while mostly told in the present, it does occasionally jump back to the past, that of Edith's perspective. What I loved most about the book is that the pace seemed just right - not too fast, but not too slow either - it just meandered along, slowly revealing all that needed to be revealed at just the right moments so that we gradually see the whole picture of what really happened. 

I loved each of the three main female characters for their own reasons. They all had unique qualities about them that make them stand out. While at first they might rub you the wrong way, they tend to grow on you and by the end of the book, you can't help but feel for them and want all the best for each of them. I especially loved Loralee's Journal of Truths - she had some pretty good nuggets of wisdom that she was writing down in that book, some on the light side and some a little heavier, but good food for thought nonetheless.

This is the type of book that seems to have it all - secrets that are revealed, a little mystery that needs to be figured out, a romance that develops, a look at domestic violence and it's impact on everything, and relationships in general as well as relationships between step-parents and step-siblings. But even with all this, the book never seemed bogged down - it was still a delightful read and really shows us that glass isn't always as fragile as we believe it to be. I cannot wait to read more of Karen White...if you've read her before, what should I pick up next?



  1. I keep meaning to try her but haven't yet.:( I swear there is not enough reading time in the day :) (or too much work, chores, and other things)

  2. Thanks so much for the lovely review, Kristin! You might also like to try THE TIME BETWEEN and ON FOLLY BEACH for your next Karen White book. :-)

  3. Why have I not read this book yet??? It sounds absolutely perfect for me. Great review! I'm excited to get to this one!

  4. I read this one. I liked the story told in segments by different characters. It gave each one's story and still remained part of the whole story.

  5. This does sound very "readable"! Excellent review, Kristin. :)

  6. I haven't read Karen White but I have seen so many good reviews for this book that it is a definite book I want to read sooner rather than later.

  7. On Folly Beach was the first Karen White book I read and it is fantastic! My personal favorites are The Tradd Street Series!

  8. I haven't read anything by Karen White either, but this one really caught my attention. Glad to hear you enjoyed it, and I think it's one I'll be adding to my shelf.


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