Author: Nancy Pickard
Genre: Adult Fiction, mystery
Publication Date: May 4, 2010
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN-13 Book: 9780345471017
Source: I purchased a copy for review from Barnes and Noble
The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
When Jody Linder's three uncles arrive on her doorstep with the news that the prison sentence of the man who killed her parents 23 years ago has been commuted, Jody is furious. But when people of her small town start discussing the crime and start saying that Billy Crosby wasn't guilty, Jody wants to know more. What secrets does her small town hold, and what is her own family keeping from her?
A year ago, a sales person at the Barnes and Noble in Valporaiso, IN told me that she had just finished this book and loved it. I looked at it then, read the first chapter, thought about purchasing it for my nook, and then put it back. I didn't have time for an adult book--I had too much that I had to read for work. I remember mentioning this book to my mother-in-law a few weeks after that. I told her what the sales person told me, and what I had read about the book on Goodreads, and about the chapter I had read. It was enough to interest her and for her to pick it up. Little did I know she would fall in love with the book, and then go on to seek out everything else Nancy Pickard had written--at the same time asking me if I had yet finished this book. Over a year later, I finally have.
Last weekend when I went down for my conference in Indianapolis, I stopped by Barnes and Noble and picked up a paperback copy of this book. I didn't know when I was going to get around to reading it, but I knew I should soon. My mother-in-law wants to recommend it to her reading group and she wanted to know what I thought of the book. Little did I know that the story would hook me so that I would finish the book in two days.
I am so used to being able to predict the endings of mysteries and TV shows that I was actually taken aback when I finished this novel. Not only did Pickard surprise me, she completely blindsided me with her ending. I can't remember the last time that has happened and I loved every minute of it!
I love how she worked the setting and the storm into her novel. Not only was there a real storm, there was a storm going on in the lives of her characters. You could feel the storm brewing as the story progressed, and you never knew what was going to happen next.
Mild spoiler coming:
I did feel that the relationship in the novel between Collin and Jody felt a bit forced. I found it hard to believe that two people with that much history between them could get together, and there was never any support to back up the relationship in the story. You are just kind of told that he loves her and she might love him with out any reason given for those feelings.
Overall this was a fun read, and one that left me pleasantly surprised. I was happy to not have predicted the ending to this one.
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This book reminded me a little of Shoot the Moon by Billie Letts.