Michael's Reviews > Down River

Down River by John Hart
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's review
May 25, 09

bookshelves: collectible, literary-prize-winner, mystery, own-it, signed-edition, read-in-2009, edgar-award, reviewed
Recommended to Michael by: Saw reviews in various publications when nominated for the Edgar
Recommended for: Fans of southern literature, family relationships, John Steinbeck fans.
Read in May, 2009, read count: 1

Adam Case returns to his home town in Rowan County, North Carolina five years after being found not guilty of murder. One of the reasons for leaving home was that the main prosecution witness against him was his step mother. He was also saddened because his father didn't take his side.

Adam's former girlfriend, Robin Alexander is now a detective on the local police department and still cares for him.
No sooner has Adam arrived in town then he is beaten by Zeb Faith and two others. The message is clear, Adam is not welcome in town and many townsfolk want his father to sell his land because if he did sell, surrounding land would increase in value based on a possible land development proposed for the area.

This is much more than a mystery novel. I feel that Hart may be influenced by the fellow North Carolian, Charles Frazier, author of "Cold Mountain." There are similiar detailed character descriptions and care for the man of integrity who will continue his search against all odds. Both Inman of "Cold Mountain" and Case of this story have that trait. In addition, Inman's love, Ada, and Case's sister, Miriam have a similarity in that fate seems to deal them a setback. It's how they deal with it that make the books different.
Wonderful story. Deserving of the Edgar Award for best mystery in 2008.
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Reading Progress

05/24/2009 page 269
82.77% "Who assaulted Grace? Now something happens to Adam Chase's father's fields. Could Adam's brother be responsible?"

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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Wilhelmina I agree - a fine piece of work!


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