Review: How Sweet The Sound by Amy Sorrells

This is touted as a coming of age in the 1980s story. I remember that decade very well. I have lived in the South for my whole life. This must take place in a different South than I know. But then, the author is from Indiana, so we have to give her some leeway.

I found this book annoying for the most part. It is not even close to Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird. Of course, not every coming of ag story that takes place in the South can come close this this classic, at least some could come close. Why do authors think that if they study a region deep enough, they can write about it and truly get the heart of it? It just doesn't happen.

 The story is written from several points of view that make it difficult to follow the story flow. You hardly have a chance to get to know one character before you are yanked into the head of another character. When the ***spoiler alert*** shooting/killing takes place, you are not sure who shot who and who the two are who died. I quit reading after that because I was aggravated at having to go back several pages to understand which was the brother and who the other guy was, the father of the girl? The boyfriend?

This book had the potential to be a truly great modern classic. It fell sadly short in that respect.

 I just could not get past the head jumping. There were no transition except for the name of the character talking at the beginning of the chapter. When will editors AND authors finally get it that to do this kind of writing you MUST have good transitions? You MUST give the reader a desire to get into the head of the character that you jump to. It is imperative in order to maintain that level of trust between author and reader. I don't think it is entirely Sorrells' fault. The editor of this book shares the blame, and should have caught this at the beginning of the editing process. One place it was well done. When the little girl put the basket of goodies at the door of the bereaved aunt, you really wanted to know why the aunt had locked herself into the guest house. Grief is one thing, but removing yourself completely from all society of family is something different, almost troubling.

I have to give it 1 star. It just wasn't good enough to hold my interest.

Amy K. Sorrells writes about broken places...and the hope of healing. Her debut novel is a Southern coming-of-age tale set in Alabama in the summer of 1980 - where three generations of the well-to-do Harlan family must finally face their dark secrets.

 Amy K. Sorrells writes words of hope for a hurting world. Winner of the 2012 Women of Faith Writing Contest, and two-time ACFW Genesis Award Semi-Finalist, Amy got her start in journalism writing for medical publications, and enjoyed a three year stint as a weekly op-ed columnist for her town newspaper. Her passion for healing is also reflected in her role as a registered nurse for a large hospital. When she's not writing or reading, she can be found bare-handed in garden dirt, or covered in paint while refurbishing antiques. A graduate of DePauw University, Amy lives with her husband, three sons, and a gaggle of golden retrievers in central Indiana.

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