Guys, I really loved this book! I didn’t realize how much I’d like literary fiction until I started reading it. This genre is definitely where you should turn if you’re looking for a GOOD story. Wow. But let’s get on to specifics:
Red Mountain by Boo Walker
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Red Mountain in eastern Washington is home to a community of eccentrics. Otis Till, the area’s visionary winemaker, has been known to howl at the moon—fully nude. Single mother Margot Pierce moved across the country to build an inn, but so far all she does is binge on gelato, the Hallmark Channel, and fantasies of murdering her ex. High school senior Emilia Forester is the daughter of celebrity parents struggling to build her own life outside of their shadow. And Brooks Baker is a man haunted by his past spent living on the streets as an orphan. Somehow, everyone lives together harmoniously, their lives intertwined like the vines in Red Mountain’s beautiful and renowned vineyards.
But in a place where everyone knows each other, secrets are like poison…and right now Otis, Margot, Emilia, and Brooks all have something to hide. When their secrets come to light, will their small mountain be stronger for it—or will lives be torn apart?
Heartfelt and wonderfully descriptive, Red Mountain is the story of four complicated people living in a beautiful landscape unlike anywhere else. Told from multiple perspectives and rich with vivid descriptions of wine life, this novel will transport you from the first page to the last.
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As you can tell from the blurb, this is a story about a group of people and it’s very much focused on developing these characters. What surprised me most from reading this book was how much of a character the place they all live became! I can definitely feel the author’s passion for Red Mountain as it comes through strongly in his writing. I’m sure you’ll all feel drawn to this magical place just as I feel now! It really does sound like a wonderful place to live!
The characters themselves, though, are given equal opportunity to grow and develop in this space. The story is told from four different perspectives so we can really come to understand and empathize them as they’re faced with difficult decisions in their lives. I’m still just struck at how good the writing is in this, that I don’t think there was one character that I didn’t like because of how well they were developed. This was maybe the most enjoyment I’ve ever gotten out of reading a book. It hit deep, guys.
That’s not to say this is a feel-good book. Yes, there are a lot of warm moments, of family and friends and just a general love of life, but it is a story of life so of course that comes with hardships. And it’s going to hurt. But I loved it!
The one thing that I’d normally find annoying in books or movies was the use of cliches, like falling in love immediately and friends turned lovers, but I think because of how complex the characters were, and how these cliches were tweaked, that it actually worked well into this story. The more iffy aspects were in regards to the portrayal of some of the female characters. One character in particular was referred to as sexual but in some contexts I felt like this was confused with sexuality. There were also some instances that felt like women were being compared to each other, where the one who used less make-up and was more modest about her appearance was ranked higher than the other. In good news, the stories of two other women focused on their attempts to improve their self-confidence and I felt much better about how this was handled.
I’ve gotten a little long here but if I could say just one word about Red Mountain, it would be touching. But obviously from my review above, I have a lot more to say than that! This is a powerful character-driven novel, and I really hope you’ll all give it a shot.
And ohmygod there’s going to be a sequel!!!!! There are a lot of people complaining that it ended on too much of a cliffhanger but I actually thought it was a solid finish. Sometimes you have to make your own endings! Still, it will be nice to experience life on Red Mountain once again.
About the Author:
Thanks to the author for a copy of this book! All opinions are my own