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I enjoyed this book but not as much as I have enjoyed this writer's other books (I have now read all three). It took a fair while to really get going and I felt it was slightly too long. However, the disaster scene at the end of the book was horrifying and so well written I felt as though I was there. My heart was in my mouth and I got quite upset about it. It is just a shame that most of the rest of the book did not live up to it. Still, it was a good story and although I would not place it at the top of my reading list of books to read again it was quite engrossing.
Slow to start. Full of annoying prejudices and clichés. Sensitive and thoughtful as it developed. The characters seemed two-dimensional at the beginning and grew in stature towards the climax. I love this book. I feel sad that the account has ended and want to know the next chapter.
Only 3 stars because I had a hard time getting into this story. I absolutely loved reading “One for the blackbird one for the crow”. I felt the writing was not as strong in this book. I’m still a fan of this author and will continue to buy her books. This book just wasn’t a good fit for me.
I was looking forward to reading this book and was very disappointed. It was so depressing! I also felt it was very repetitive , many of the descriptions were repeated in new scenes. The ending was good but it took a long depressing road to get there. Hope her next book is more like her first two books.
I always LOVE Hawker's writing but this one was a disappointment. I'm not sure if she wrote it too quickly or if the subject was too shallow. The situation with the painting and the sister bothered me. Just creepy. It dragged on and on....Disappointing. I won't pre-order again in the future. Will wait for more reviews first.
Every happy family is the same, but every dysfunctional family makes absorbing reading. The Rigby family is no exception - in fact, they might be a prime example.
The Rise of Light is a richly detailed portrait of a family, a community, and a religion that both holds and tears apart that family and community. For all that the main characters are sympathetic, none of them are particularly likable, because they all keep secrets and hurt each other to protect themselves. Gad, the patriarch of the Rigby family, is an awful human: an abusive father, a distant husband, and something more, which, when his carefully seeded backstory appears, makes you empathize with him even as you want to punch him into the next state.
Aran and Tamsin, two of Gad's children, deal with their father's tempers in different ways. Aran tries to conform and to make his father happy, but nothing he does will ever be enough - and if his father discovers his secret painting, it will get even worse. Tamsin wants nothing more than to escape and be able to control her own life.
As always, Hawker is top notch at her descriptions of landscape, so vivid that you can see it. Her handling of Aran's art, how he sees light and renders it on canvas, are is also very convincing and evocative.
This is another fabulous book from Olivia Hawker, only slightly less perfect than her One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow, which is one of my absolute favorites.
I moved to Rexburg Idaho two months after the (spoiler alert!) flood and saw the devastation it left behind. I also experienced some of the close-mindedness of the community, but not from a family member. Her depiction is pretty close to accurate in portraying the marriage meat-market of the singles wards in the community.
I have never experienced anything close to the family dynamics that are at the center of the book, but did know of a very few who did. Most people in this culture are (like Sandy) very loving and supportive to their families and not the crazies this book makes people of this faith out to be. That said, there are always extremists in every religion.
When I started this book I had no idea what it was about and nearly stopped reading it. There is enough hatred in the world right now I wasn't sure if I could handle it hitting so close to home, but I did finish it. I thought the way the father totally changed in the end was far-fetched. Most people I've met would never do such a turn-around in their personality. I also was very uncomfortable with the secret that Aran and Tamsin shared, but other than that I enjoyed the book.
Couldn’t put it down. The way this is written, describing the light in every scene, is how I see life and how I picture everything I’m reading. To have it already written this way was a huge breath of fresh air for me and now I want every book to be written this way! The storyline and characters were also riveting and intriguing and I was stunned at the end to find out it was based on a true story from the author’s family tree. Just crazy. I’ve read The Ragged Edge of Night and One For The Blackbird, One For The Crow from Olivia Hawker and she is an incredible writer, weaving these amazing tales in such an affecting and beautiful, raw way. I love her mind. Can’t wait to read the next novel she puts out. Bravo! Highly recommend!
I loved this author’s previous two novels, found the writing, character development and storyline to be exceptional. I was excited to read this book when it was published. Alas, it left me wondering if I was reading the same author’s work. The pace of the story was stifling until the end, with characters that only added to the drag. The strange obsession between the oldest brother and his younger sister to paint her in the nude, many of the paintings occurring while she was a young teenager is unsettling and never explained in away that makes it more palatable. I finished the book, but it took a lot of determination.