At the Water's Edge: A Novel - Sara Gruen

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I loved Water for Elephants, so I was REALLY excited when I got the ARC of this book.  I really like Sara Gruen's prose, which continues to be very good here.  I did, however, feel like a few things kept this from being a 5 star book.  I really wanted to know more about Mairi and Angus.  Most of the characters were well developed, but Mairi (who plays a pretty big supporting role,

despite being dead after the prologue

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) really gets short shrift.  Angus, who ends up being a pretty major character, is only really developed through Anna telling Maddie his history.  We don't really get to learn a lot else about Angus, just small glimpses here and there.

I also would have loved more info about <i>their</i> marriage, like why Mairi was so despondent that she killed herself when she thought he was killed in action.

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Finally, the love story between Maddie and Angus was a little bit of a head scratcher.  Don't get me wrong, I liked that they got together, it was just a little puzzling how Maddie fell in love with him (and Angus with her) because they don't actually interact with each other all that much.  They mostly interact with the other characters and sort of circle & observe each other from afar.  So, when Maddie finally decides to leave Ellis, it was like "huh" when she does so to start a relationship with Angus.

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That being said, I did like Maddie's growth as a character throughout the book.  I also liked the development of the the strange relationship with Ellis, Maddie and Hank as the situation strained the trio along the way.

I also liked that Maddie figured out that she was their mutual beard, as the real romance was between Ellis and Hank, who obviously couldn't be out and proud in the 1940's.

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Overall, it's definitely worth reading and highly enjoyable.