Jennifer's Reviews > Heading Out to Wonderful

Heading Out to Wonderful by Robert Goolrick
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's review
Mar 17, 2012

liked it
bookshelves: literature, historical

This one is more of an enigma than A Reliable Wife, but Goolrick's delicious writing is still in evidence. I liked the idea of his main character, Charlie Beale; a loner that finds in Brownsburg, VA a kind of paradise. I also get that he falls hard in love with Sylvan Glass. What threw me was his complete turn-around and the last violent act.

I don't think it was completely out of character - but the fact that he loved Sam and then did this awful thing in his presence (when he didn't even want Sylvan to testify at the trial "in front of the boy") seemed less convincing - even if it had impact. And the brief glimpse we got of the effect on Sam in the epilogue was too brief - I was more curious at that point how he had dealt with the tragedy.

Still, Goolrick is great at characterization: Claudie, Boaty, and even Jackie Robinson are drawn carefully. A sort of depressing novel, but beautiful in its sadness.

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