Polliwog's Reviews > The Secret River

The Secret River by Kate Grenville
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's review
Jul 01, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: finished-2008
Read in June, 2008

The writing is evocative, the plot riveting. There is much violence, particularly at the end--enough to make me cringe and skim a bit--but it's necessary to the story, not gratuitous.

The character metamorphosis is the jewel of the book, with so many profound lessons to glean (thankfully they're couched deeply in the story and subtle enough to be ignored if that's not something you're looking for).

My only complaint (though truly it is a strength and I appreciate it) is that it's too darn realistic--everything is bittersweet and clouded; nothing ties up in a neat little bow. It leaves you feeling unsettled and with lots to think about.

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