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Book Review: One Foot in Eden by Ron Rash

One Foot in Eden: A Novel


Holland Winchester is considered a war hero when he returns to his small town in South Carolina after fighting in Korea, but he is also a troublemaker. Then one day, Holland disappears. His mother, who heard gunshots, is convinced he's been murdered ~ and she accuses her neighbors Billy and Amy Holcombe of the murder. But Sheriff Alexander can't find a body or any other proof that a murder has even taken place.

In One Foot in Eden, Ron Rash transports us to the Appalacian Mountains of South Carolina, weaving a story of love, murder and family through the voices of several different narrators: the sheriff, Billy and Amy, their son and the deputy. Through each subsequent narrator, we learn a bit more about the true story of what happened to Holland. We also get to know each of the characters, their histories and the motivation for their actions.

I really loved this story. It pulled me in and kept me engaged as each piece of the story was revealed. I felt like I got to know and understand each and every character ~ and amazingly enough, I actually cared about all of them. This is a story of people and the choices they make. It's a story of how one person's actions can impact a community. It's a story of forgiveness and understanding. Rash gives each character his or her own voice, choosing different words and phrases to help define each character and make them seem real. I highly recommend this one.

My Rating: 5/5

Reading group guide and discussion questions for One Foot in Eden 

Read my review of Serena by Ron Rash

This review was written based on a copy of One Foot in Eden that I borrowed from the library. This is book #3 for the Support Your Local Authors Challenge, book #9 for the Support Your Local Library Reading Challenge and book #31 for the Countdown 2010 Challenge.

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