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Sweet Water

3.34  ·  Rating Details ·  5,161 Ratings  ·  604 Reviews
Kline's first novel is a captivating read.
When a grandfather she never knew bequeaths her a house and 60 acres of land in Sweetwater, Tenn., a restless young artist leaves New York to recover her past and rethink her future. Cassie Simon's mother Ellen died when Cassie was only three; raised in Boston by her grieving father, she never knew her maternal relatives. Unprepar
Paperback, 285 pages
Published May 1st 1994 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published May 1st 1993)
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Apr 25, 2014 Kelly rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

I can't remember the last time I got this angry about a book without DNFing it. I couldn't DNF it, you see. The WTFery is all right at the very end. I can't really call it an end. This book doesn't end. It just stops. You think you might be easing into the denouement and you hit the page turn button and the next page is...a preview of the author's other book.

And screeching to a halt like that meant the author hadn't gotten me as a reader, yet, to buy into for
Jul 15, 2013 Shannon rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Christy Martin Bullock
I would have given this a solid three stars if the author would have actually ended the book. Seriously. I kept thinking there was an issue with my Kindle copy and something didn't download.
Cassandra Simon had been living and working with Adam for so long, her life felt stale; she was stuck in a rut and didn’t know what to do about it. Cassie was an artist – sculpting with clay was relaxing and gave her a sense of peace. New York had been her home for her whole life – living with her father after her mother had died when she was three years old was all she remembered; she didn’t know her mothers’ family at all…

When she discovered her grandfather – a man she had never known – had le
Apr 18, 2014 ☮Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nook
This is the first book written by Kline, who wrote The Orphan Train. They're giving away the ebook version now, I think mainly to provide an intro to that other book in case you're one of the few yet to read it. Many typos and unintended bolding of random words were a bit distracting.

I felt the writing style was inconsistent, and it seemed the author wasn't sure what kind of book she wanted this to be. It is touted as a mystery, but the mystery wasn't that great, and it seemed a little Harlequin
Jul 10, 2009 Ali rated it it was amazing
Wow, I've lucked out recently with good books. I hope that doesn't mean I'm due for some boring ones soon. This was excellent - so interesting and the suspense part of it had me totally absorbed. I love this writer (thanks for telling me about her Katie!) and I'll definitely read her other books. I think she's only written three books since 1994 and one is due out next month. The writing is superb and Kline has that great storyteller quality that makes for my favorite kinds of books.
Sep 30, 2011 Melissa rated it really liked it
Cassie Simon returns to her mother's hometown in Sweet Water, Tennessee when she inherits a home and land from her grandfather. There, Cassie reconnects with her estranged family and tries to find out what happened the day her mother died in a car accident when Cassie was only three years old. The past is revealed in alternating chapters richly told by Cassie's grandmother and present chapters with Cassie doing her own investigating. I'd been stuck in a rut of starting books that lacked movement ...more
Mar 25, 2013 Jennifer rated it it was ok
I liked pieces of it but other things - little side stuff that didn't affect the story line but did affect my feelings about this book popped up every once in a while and soured the book for me. (view spoiler)
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Jul 05, 2014 Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews rated it really liked it

From New York City to Tennessee?

Was Cassie making the right move? She thought so, but meeting family members she hadn't seen since she was three was frightening as well as disillusioning. She had to find out her roots, to find out what happened to her mother, and to find out why her mother really didn't want to live in Sweetwater, Tennessee, and why her grandfather left her the family home and 60 acres. What could the reason possibly be when she never knew him?

Cassie is an interesting character
Anne  (Booklady) Molinarolo
Oct 13, 2011 Anne (Booklady) Molinarolo rated it really liked it
Twenty seven year old Cassandra Simon is lost. Her life in NYC is mundane at best. Both her professional and personsal lives are lacking. Cassie isn’t sure what is lacking. So when an unexpected bequest from Amory Clyde, she decides to go to Sweet Water TN. Her father warns her that she may not find what she’s looking for. Her friend Drew cautions, “Sometimes we are running from something or we are running towards something.” For Cassie the truth may be both.

Haunted by the death of her mother 2
Jo-Ann Murphy
Apr 28, 2014 Jo-Ann Murphy rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, kindle
I had trouble deciding on a rating for this book.

The premise and the writing kept me captivated throughout. I did not want to put it down. I really enjoyed the read. On that basis, I would have given it 5 stars.

The problem came with the details. The writing did not convey the setting to me. I did not get the feeling from the dialogue that this family came from TN. I don't think there was one "bless your heart" in the whole book. These people felt more like they belonged in the Northeast. They se
May 16, 2014 Maita rated it it was ok
I'm not sure what to think of this book. I found it a compelling read but SPOILER ALERT, it contained a very creepy side plot with Cassie falling for her cousin. Yes, I get he's adopted so they technically aren't related and they'd never met so it wasn't like they grew up together, but seriously. Ewwww. It wasn't like they were long, lost 5th cousins or anything that never knew the other existed. First cousins. Who knew about each other, albeit, again, never met. I found that a little skeevy.

Aug 02, 2009 Linda rated it really liked it
Liked the way the story is told by both grandmother and granddaughter with each chapter featuring one or the other. After being disillusioned with her life in New York, a young woman moves to Tennessee after the maternal grandfather she never met leaves a home and land to her. Since her mother died when she was 3, she is eager to meet the extended family for the first time in hopes of learning details about her mother's terrible accident, which leads to some very dark discoveries & well-kept ...more
Patricia C
Mar 27, 2015 Patricia C rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 18, 2014 Beth rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-on-kindle
Really liked this book a lot. Great writing and a wonderful story of a young woman (Cassie) who returns to her Tennessee roots to re-connect with family after inheriting her grandparent's home. Her Mother had died when she was 3 and her father raised her in Boston. Her Mother's family had not kept in touch and so finding out that she had been given the family homestead was a big surprise.

Lots of family secrets and some beautiful descriptions of the Tennessee countryside and what life in a small,
Scarlett S
Mar 23, 2014 Scarlett S rated it it was ok
All the build up to this big mystery only to be let down in the end. I like the way the story was told but I just expected too much for the ending I guess.
Lil Bit
May 08, 2017 Lil Bit rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Priscilla Wilson
May 18, 2017 Priscilla Wilson rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book for the most part. It did get confusing towards the end though & I didn't like how she ended it. Good read.......up until the last 50 pages 🙄
Mar 08, 2017 Wendy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-reads
I'm not sure if I didn't like the book or if I'm just not used to listening to one. This was my first audiobook and I think I was too distracted by the voice changes. However, I did not care for the long, drawn out reveals that were meant to keep the reader engaged with the plot.
Havebooks Willread
May 17, 2016 Havebooks Willread rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
This wasn't the most interesting or well-written (or moral!) book, yet the characterization was quite good. PEOPLE! One of the reasons I love to read is thinking about people and why they do what they do, why they are who they are.

My main takeaway from this book is the importance of CHOICE. We choose who we are going to be, how we are going to deal with situations, and in a sense, I think we teach others how to treat us--we have some say in how others treat us because we choose whether we'll put
Nancy Baker
Dec 28, 2016 Nancy Baker rated it liked it
Well let me start out by saying that I loved this author's book, "The Orphan Train". I was expecting another outstanding story but I'm afraid the author missed the boat on this one.

Cassandra, who lives in New York City and works in a small, struggling art store, receives word that the grandfather she never really knew has passed away and left her his land and old home in Sweet Water. When Cassandra was a small child, her mother was killed in a car accident in which her grandfather was driving.
Feb 21, 2017 Carol rated it liked it
I'm not sure if this story is as interesting as the reviews it has created. Others reactions aside, Kline touches family life as it oftentimes happens - lots of assumptions built on a little bit of knowledge running through personal filters of love and hate.
Jun 02, 2014 Theresa rated it it was ok
For Kline's first novel, this is an ok read. I got it for free or maybe 99 cents on my kindle, so glad I didn't spend much on it.

The story of this family and their past secrets reads a bit like a mystery, but also bit of family drama. The characters were pretty one dimensional, and I didn't really connect with any of them. Some, like Clyde and Elaine, I didn't really like at all! Troy's character and his relationship with Cassie was very odd to me in general, kind of just thrown in there for fod
Apr 04, 2015 Laurel rated it liked it
Difficult rating because this writer has an incredible talent and skill with wording. Unlike many books, I was drawn into this novel and wanted to get to the next page. However, the actual storylines and unresolved questions make it impossible to rate this author on her talented use of words alone.

There are characters that lead nowhere. There are scenes that are irrelevant. Is this a mystery or a romance novel? Depending on what page you're on, it changes.

In the end, I believe I can connect an
Really 3.5 stars.
A story as much about secrets kept buried as it is about a dysfunctional family. In the small town of Sweetwater, Tennessee, gossip abounds and lies and malice are covered up with a polite smile and false friendships. For the Clyde family, whispers of infidelity, betrayals and jealousies have been haunting them for years. They have managed to find a semblance of family unity as long as no one speaks of the deaths that occured years before. When Cassie shows up in town to claim t
Well, this was a fairly quick read and again ( I read Orphan Train first ) it is told in two voices. Orphan Train is set in Maine and Minnesota. ( I live in Maine ) And Sweetwater is set in Tennessee - where I grew up. So both books appealed on a geographic level at first. But I was pulled even further in by the women in the stories who have interesting characters but aren't perfect. Just trying to make the right choices. One of the repeating themes in the story is that there are different ways ...more
Oct 11, 2014 Dan rated it it was ok
Cassie Simon, a New York artist is left a house on sixty acres of land in the South by her grandfather (someone she never met). Unhappy with her life in the Big Apple, she decides to move to Tennessee and start life anew and meet the family she never knew. Of course, they are all suspicious of her and wonder why she is there. IS she trying to dig up dirt of her mother’s death and secrets the family has buried?

The story starts off well and the characters likable and the narrative descriptive. It
Dec 28, 2016 Annette rated it liked it
Quick read from Christina Baker Kline who wrote Orphan Train. I must say upfront the Kindle edition contained typos, and some serious formatting issues. Despite the quirks the book was interesting enough.
Cassie Simon is left a house in rural Tennessee by her late grandfather. She has not had contact with her mother's family since her mother died in a car crash when Cassie was three years old.

As she restores the house and gets to know her relatives Cassie uncovers some painful stories about her m
Jennifer Lassiter
May 20, 2014 Jennifer Lassiter rated it really liked it
Interesting writing style. While I enjoyed this book, it was also a little hard to follow. I was 80% of the way through the book before I truly understood what all was happening and had happened. I really liked the way she illustrated and described the Grandmother's personality, life, and journey. I was a little perplexed at how the main character managed to make it on tips as a bar waitress. Where did she get her money??? I can only assume an inheritance from her mother's death.

I would have pr
Jan 07, 2016 Beth rated it liked it
I chose this book to read because of the author's book Orphan Train but, sadly, it didn't measure up to it. The story is told by Cassandra whose mother died in an accident when she was three and by her maternal grandmother she hadn't seen since the funeral. The family are suspicious of Cassandra's motives for moving from New York to Sweet Water, Tennessee where they all live when her grandfather dies and leaves her the rundown, abandoned family home. I found some contradictions in grandmother's ...more
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Christina Baker Kline is the author of the new novel A Piece of the World (2017), about the relationship between the artist Andrew Wyeth and the subject of his best-known painting, Christina’s World. Kline has written five other novels -- Orphan Train, The Way Life Should Be, Sweet Water, Bird in Hand, and Desire Lines-- and written or edited five works of nonfiction. Her 2013 novel Orphan Train s ...more
More about Christina Baker Kline...

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“What I couldn’t see is that sometimes the healing is not in the forgetting but in the letting go. Sometimes the answer you need is to a question you don’t know how to ask.” 2 likes
“Memory believes before knowing remembers.” 0 likes
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