Monday, November 17, 2014

Stillwater Rising by Steena Holmes

Stillwater Rising by Steena Holmes

262 pages, Paperback
Published November 2014, Lake Union Publishing

Source: Sent by publisher for BookSparks Fall Reading Challenge, NetGalley

About the Book

After losing her son in an elementary school shooting that devastates the tight-knit community of Stillwater Bay, Jennifer Crowne finds herself unable to settle back into her role of perfect stay-at-home mom and committee organizer. Meanwhile, her best friend, Mayor Charlotte Stone, struggles to keep the town together, and Charlotte’s husband, the school principal, may not be the hero everyone thinks him to be.
As they try to heal from this irrevocable trauma, Jenn and Charlotte find themselves at a crossroads—within the town and within their friendship. For Jenn, broken and grieving, there is no going back, and she demands that the school be closed so that she can bury the past. Yet Charlotte is equally desperate to hold the town together, fighting the school closure and helping the shooter’s mother regain her place in the community. Jenn and Charlotte’s relationship is put to the ultimate test as each weighs her own interests against the bonds of their friendship.

My Review

Having a child who will one day be enrolled in public school made this a hard book to read. I kind of understood the pain the grieving parents are experiencing and the terror of sending their other kids back and also how some blamed the mother for her son's actions. I would like to think that I would be more forgiving and understanding, but wow, you never know how you would react if it was your own.

This was an interesting book, as it follows the characters months after the tragic shooting and not leading up to it or during.  This story is more about the town's reaction to the tragedy and how they survive it. Relationships are broken, friendships are strained and others become stronger.  I really enjoyed reading about these people and hoping they would be okay.

About the Author

Growing up as a small town Canadian girl, there wasn't much to do but ride your bike, hang out with friends on the beach and daydream. I always wanted to write but never dreamed it was something I could do as a career. I love to travel and fell in love with the sheep covered hillside, old castles and romantic history of Scotland and England. I dream about waking up in Tuscany and touring small town shops in the south of France with my husband, of placing my toes in the ocean and experiencing history first hand. As a mother with three daughters, I'm learning that teaching them to pursue their dreams is a lasting legacy. I love to wake up to the Rocky Mountains, will forever enjoy the taste of coffee and chocolate and can't imagine the day when a story doesn't unfold in my heart. Living a life with passion and pursuing dreams is a life well lived.

Happy Reading!

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