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Tomorrow River

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  1,194 Ratings  ·  190 Reviews
From the national bestselling author of "Whistling in the Dark."
During the summer of 1968 in Rockbridge County, Virginia, eleven-year- old Shenandoah Carmody's mother disappeared. Her twin sister, Woody, stopped speaking, and her once-loving father slipped into a mean drunkenness unbefitting a superior court judge.
As the first anniversary of their mother's disappearanc
ebook, 352 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by New American Library (first published 2010)
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I finished reading this like five hours ago, and I'm still having trouble figuring out how to put into words how much I loved this book.

Admittedly, I wasn't too sure about this at first, but I think that's only because it takes a little bit to get used to having a 12-year-old as the narrator to a story--especially one as fiesty as Shenny!

This book was beautiful. End of story. I cannot believe that Lesley Kagen is not more well-known. With Shenny telling the story, it is at times quite comical
Jul 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have to say, I wasn't expecting to actually read the whole book. In order to get ready for author, Leslie Kagen, to make an appearance, time had slipped away and I had one day to read this novel. I was told to read the last few chapters. I have a hard time reading the ending of books, unless they are real stinkers and I am about to give up on them. So, I read the first few chapters. This book was amazing! I was up all night finishing it and I am ready to read it again. It is reminisent of Harp ...more
This book was fast paced with easy readability. I felt the author did a fantastic job of capturing a true sounding 11 year old narrator. I'm always frustrated when an author attempts to portray a child and said child thinks nothing like the given age. Often times authors give the child too much insight or too great an ability to see everyday life from an adult perspective. I thought Lesley Kagen made the main character, Shenny, an obviously bright, gregarious and very verbal 11 year old child. S ...more
Book Concierge
Everyone in Rockbridge County knows the Carmody family – they’re the richest and most powerful clan in this part of Virginia. Shenandoah and Jane Woodrow Carmody are 11-year-old twins living at Lilyfield – a large home in rural Virginia – with their father, a judge, and their housekeeper Louise Jackson. As the novel opens, their mother has been missing for nearly a year, and their father has clearly descended into an alcoholic depression. He is keeping the twins virtual prisoners at home, though ...more
Linda Day
Feb 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first 3/4ths of this book was just wonderful. I read w/o taking a break, but then the ending kind of fell apart. I was disappointed ... kind of like the sky rocket that starts out with all the colors, and then just fizzles. :(

This is a mystery with several twists. Set in a small Southern town which is dominated by the men in one family (a little Cat on a Hot Tin Roof-ish) and the ensuing disappearance of the wife of one of the sons in this family. She, Eve, is also the mother or the narrator
Cathe Olson
Jul 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
12-year-old twin girls try to deal with the disappearance of their mother in different ways. Woody (Jane) retreats into herself, no longer talking or caring for herself. Shen takes care of her sister and tries to solve the mystery by secretly interviewing townspeople. Meanwhile, both girls have to deal with their father's increasing drunkenness and unpredictable moods.

I found this book intriguing and definitely wanted to keep reading to find out what really happened on the night of the carnival
Anya Tsinko
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First sentence: If you'd had the occasion to come calling on the Carmody clan of Rockbridge County that long-ago summer being a stranger and not familiar with our twisting mountain roads and all, you might've found yourself pulling into the Triple S for directions.

Favorite quote: Today's worn itself down to a trickle, my sweetpeas in a pod. But tomorrow is a river waiting to carry us to our fondest dreams.

This started out as just an okay story for me, worth reading, but not great. As the story p
Feb 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
Ok, sadly this is one of those books that I listened to on audio which I would have gotten a lot more out of by reading it in print. I love Kagen’s writing style and she actually narrated the audio version, which was excellent, but there were a lot of little details and a lot of characters that I found difficult to keep track of. I also found my mind wandering at times. I do have to say that she definitely brought to life the 1960s Virginia setting with a brilliant depiction of local color. I lo ...more
Jul 11, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a mystery, the book is highly predictable. But that's okay, really, since the narrator is an eleven year old and it makes sense that an adult reader would piece things together faster than she would. I enjoyed the narrative voice, although I never could buy the twin character (Woody). I understand she was recently mute and psychologically fragile, but she was portrayed as being so developmentally stunted that I couldn't believe she hadn't been that way before the incident. Shen makes it seem ...more
Jan 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The third I've read by Lesley Kagen. This is filled with so many characters (and some of them similar) that it takes a while to catch on. The protagonists are twin girls--Shenandoah and Woody. Shenandoah is taking care of Woody since she has gone mute due to a trauma. Both girls are trying to sort out the death of their mother and the cruelness of their father. Even though the subject matter is tough, Kagen again manages to brings a lighthearted attitude to the topic by creating an atmosphere wh ...more
Apr 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After I got this book home, I wondered whatever possessed me to pick it up. I'm glad that I did, as I thouroughly enjoyed every minute of this story. I fell in love ith the twins - one weak and needy, and the other one strong and resilient.
The twins' mother disappears. Shenny wants to find her. Woody refuses to talk. Their father, the judge is abusive to them, and is going to wed another. What really happened to their mother? Is she dead like everyone imagines? Lots of story lines. I was surpri
Oct 08, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It has been almost a year since Shenandoah Carmody’s mother disappeared, taking with her their idyllic life as a prominent family in their late-1960’s Virginia town: her twin sister has stopped speaking, and her father is withdrawn. Shenny is convinced that her mother is out there somewhere, and her return will restore their family life to the way it was. Her memories, and the actions of the narrative, however, reveal that issues of race, class, and gender were – and still are – at work. And She ...more
Jeannie Turicik
May 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a GREAT story. I have read all of Lesely's books and enjoyed them, but in my opinion, this is her best work. She truly captures the emotions of the twin sisters as they try to solve the puzzle of their missing Mother, and endure the hardships placed upon them by their troubled Father--and twisted evil Grandparents and Uncle. The books has some outstanding support characters and a great ending. Kudos to Lesley--and I hope you've started your next book!!

If you havent' read it yet--do so!
Aug 16, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: jamie
I really liked this story, but was a bit confused about the 11 year old's point of view - sometimes it is too advanced to be realistic, and at other times I found myself getting frustrated by how dense and overly innocent she seemed. (maybe this is realistic? I only know a few 11 year olds!)

The plot moves along quickly enough and is interesting. I couldn't put the book down once I was halfway through. Great ending.
Mar 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a page-turning novel of suspense and intrigue with interesting characters that come alive. Things are not what they appear. Shenandoah Wilson and Jane Woodrow are 12 year old twin girls living in West Virginia. Seeing the world through the eyes of a 12 year old child brings a sense of honesty and understanding that will leave you touched and tearful. This novel has a number of unexpected twists, which makes turning each page a delight. I truly enjoyed this one! I recommend!
Gayle Wingerter
Apr 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Set in Kentucky during 1969, this well-written story of twin girls hooked me from the first page. Their mother has been missing for a year, and the effect on the two very different 11 year-olds is devastating. As one twin tries to solve the mystery of her mother's disappearance, the other has withdrawn and become mute. Little by little the reader learns about family dynamics and secrets. I read the book in about 3 days, unusual for me.
Oct 16, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book club book. I thoroughly enjoyed it. The author does a great job processing events through the eyes of a young girl while still giving enough information so that as an adult you understand what's really happening. I also love that the ending is well done, no unanswered questions or sudden endings here.
May 23, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I liked this book for most of the book, it's the Knight on a shining horse ending. Two 11-year old twin girls against the adults (and one emotionally damaged who can no longer speak), with a couple plot twists and suddenly it's solved totally out of left field. Rather disappointing given the writing to that point.
Sep 01, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love, love, love Lesley Kagen. This book had it all-a mystery, a suspense tale a love story, a family drama...The story is told from the innocent-eye point-of-view which helps create some dramatic irony. As for the mystery part, I thought I had that all figured out a third of the way into the book. Which of course I didn't! I was sorry when I had to put this one down.
Jul 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my favorite of her books so far. The story follows two twins investigating the disappearance of their mother. The book starts out simple and charming, but turns progressively darker--not in a scary way though.
Holly Cartier
Dec 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read 'Whistling in the dark" because of the Milwaukee connection--and I loved this story. The end was a complete surprise, and the atmosphere the author invokes is so engrossing. Sit down with time to read it all.
Aug 20, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faves
This book was absolutely wonderful!!
DebParins Zich
Sep 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
The author, Lesley Kagen, came to our book club and was as fantastic in person as her characters are in her novel :)
Jun 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This was a phenomenal book all the twists and turns are totally amazing. I cant wait for her next book to come out.
Feb 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nov 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book. It's the kind of book I may read a second time. Lesley Kagen's writing is so Addictive!
Mechele McDaniel Rose
Love this book!
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Lesley Kagen is a mother of two, a grandmother of two, an actress, celebrated public speaker, essayist, and the award winning, New York Times bestselling author of eight novels, including her newest, THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY, which will be released in January 2017. She lives in a charming small town in Wisconsin in a hundred-fifty-year-old farm house with her dog, Gracie.

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“Memories are so two-faced.
One minute they're hugging you like a long-lost friend, the next minute they're ripping you apart like your worst enemy.”
“When you least expect to recall something, a memory can pop up like an uninvited guest on your doorstep.” 5 likes
More quotes…