Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Despite the dark themes of alcohol addiction and domestic violence, this novel is a delight to read. In particular, the writing is tight, succinct, and appropriate. The imagery is wonderful, as demonstrated in the following excerpt (p17). ‘The town wharf, draped in frayed ropes and old pelicans, jutted into the small bay, whose water, when calm, reflected the reds and yellows of the shrimp boats.’ A vibrant picture in one sentence.
The characters have depth, although some suspension of disbelief is necessary in the case of young Kya, an girl of seven abandoned and surviving alone in harsh circumstances. My favourite characters are Jumpin’ and his wife, Mabel, people of colour who show compassion when the white community shows nothing but contempt toward the ‘Marsh Girl’.
The mystery aspect of the plot is nicely paced and the unexpected twist at the very end is well worth the wait. All in all, an easy read that deserves the popularity it has won.