Bookworm's Reviews > More Than Words Can Say: A Novel

More Than Words Can Say by Robert Barclay
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's review
Jan 16, 12

Read in January, 2012

Chelsea Enright comes from a wealthy family from Upstate New York. When her grandmother dies, she bequeaths Chelsea her antique lakeside cottage located in the Adirondacks. She leaves Chelsea a note, with a key, instructing her to go to the cottage alone and open a tin box that is hidden beneath floorboards.
What Chelsea finds inside the box are her grandmother Brooke's diaries, dating back to WWII. As she reads her past diary entries, she learns all kinds of secrets about her grandma. Chelsea also meets a local doctor named Brandon Yale who lives right near her cottage. Brandon has a past of his own to share.

The story goes back and forth from present time to the past as Chelsea reads Brooke's diary entries and learns long kept secrets about her grandmother's past. As she reads the journal, she visits the same places her grandmother mentions as history begins to repeat itself a bit. She feels connected to her grandmother more than ever. Chelsea also learns about a mysterious man in her grandmother's life, Greg Butler. Chelsea now wonders what to do with the information she has found out about her grandmother's past.

My thoughts:
The premise and the setting of More Than Words Can Say caught my interest right away. Having vacationed in Upstate New York's Adirondacks and loving it, I was eager to escape into this novel and I could easily envision the sights and sounds as Chelsea goes to her newly inherited cottage by the lake.
I liked that this novel has contemporary romance with a dash of history blended in. The setting was fantastic.

However, I didn't love this book for a few reasons. I found the characters to be a tad bit cheesy and some of the dialogue seemed corny to me.

I also found the descriptions at times to be overly done. Everything down from location of furniture, to people's clothing to the food they were eating, was described in what I felt was too much detail and I didn't like that. The clothing in particular was just too much. I don't need to know what each character is wearing in nearly every single scene.

I did enjoy when the narrative would go back in time to Brooke's story. Author Robert Barclay does a good job at alternating the story between the 1940's and present time using Brooke's journal entries as a segue. I like the idea of a story within a story.
The book is set in the small town of Serendipty NY and the author gives the town a nice feel to it. I liked when the characters would go out for dinner or chat with the locals, I enjoy small town vibes and descriptions in stories.

Overall I found More Than Words Can Say to be a good read but I wish it were better, it surely had the potential to be. I expected more from this novel.
The idea is premise is great, but the delivery fell just a tad bit flat.

In the story, Brooke leaves Chelsea her book of recipes. Brooke named each dish after famous people of the time. Both Brooke and Chelsea cook these dishes throughout the book and some of the recipes are included at the end of the novel. I thought that was a nice touch.

I LOVE cheesecake and anything involving Sweetened Condensed Milk, so I gave Brooke's cheesecake recipe a go. This is called Churchill's Cherry and Cream and Cheese Pie. It turned out really yummy.
read my full review here

My free review copy came from amazon vine

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