I flew through it, utterly in awe of the gorgeous settings, descriptions and storyline…
I absolutely adore a novel that explores, in great detail, the breakdown and aftermath of a marriage/relationship. I love reading about second-chance love, characters who become reacquainted after years of being apart, but even more than that, I cannot get enough of a story that involves the dynamics of a family.
I’m a HUGE family girl and for me, there’s nothing better for me to sink my teeth into, as a reader, than a meaty novel dissecting a family, allowing me a clear and fantastically written insight into the ins-and-outs that other people outside of said family would perhaps have no idea about.
In Jan Ruth’s Wild Water I was given exactly that. We’re first introduced to Jack who is clearly having a hard time as the novel opens. He’s stressed with work, he’s suspicious of his wife Patsy, and right away, I was interested in the darker corners of their marriage. I wanted to know where these suspicious had begun and why, and Jan Ruth provided these answers for me. What I truly loved, and cannot praise enough, was Jan’s ability to not only bring the issues in Jack and Patsy’s marriage to the surface, but also the sheer depth of them, how deep the author was willing to traverse. I couldn’t have felt closer to Jack’s emotions if I’d wanted to. I was able to understand perfectly all of the ‘whys’ and ‘hows’ and ‘whens’, and although it was sometimes sad to read, I really couldn’t wait to see where Jan would lead her characters. In fact, I was desperate to see where Jan would take them. I couldn’t wait to get there and watch how the plot would unravel.
Alongside the captivating focus on the breakdown of Jack and Patsy’s marriage, Jan included a secondary focus on their children (Lottie, Oliver and Chelsea), as well as on one of Jack’s long-ago acquaintances Anna. I knew from the blurb anyway that Anna was at some point going to return to Jack’s life, but I absolutely adored seeing how, and feeling the effects of her presence on Jack through Jan’s gorgeous emotive descriptions. It was hard for me not to take sides within this story, especially as there are always two sides to take into consideration, but I really, truly felt for Jack within this novel. His struggle was put into perfect perspective, including each of the things he was juggling to try to stay above water. When the truth is revealed about Patsy, I was inched even closer to his side (metaphorically speaking, of course!). There was so much going on within this novel, and once I’d finished, I found myself marvelling at how Jan Ruth had managed to fit so much heart and feeling into only 271 pages.
I loved everything about the plot and pacing of Wild Water, although I do have to be honest and say that when it comes to real estate, I’m a bit clueless. I tried my best to familiarise myself with the terms used in regards to the business, and didn’t feel like it was too difficult to understand what was going on which is always good. Nothing worse that trying to follow a plot and feeling clueless about what’s being said/wrote, but I was thrilled to find that this wasn’t the case with this novel. I found that it only added to the authenticity of Jack’s life and career and it felt solid and real within the plot. I also feel that it told me a lot about Jack and his character, figuring out what made him tick and what made his stress. It seemed perfectly fitting for Jack’s character and made him all the more believable to me. Alongside the deeper issues, Jan’s romance was just superb, and seemed like such a stark contrast to the breakdown of his marriage. The progression and consequences of Anna returning to his life were beautifully achieved, and again, it tugged further through the novel.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my reading of Wild Water by Jan Ruth. I flew through it, utterly in awe of the gorgeous settings, descriptions and storyline.