It’s one of those things you do as an independent writer. You offer to read other people’s self-published books and write a review because you need to support each other. Added to that, the author is a friend of a friend of a friend and you kind of virtually know each other, so you want to do the right thing.
So, groaning inside, I offered to read a virtual friend’s eBook. The cover art looked dull and not promising and then I remember, my cover art isn’t so hot either. Good cover art is difficult to come by when you’re an Indie. The story didn’t seem to be my normal reading…not that I have narrow tastes but this didn’t seem to be a fit.
But I’d made a promise. So I started reading.
Waiting for Spring is indeed outside my usual genres but Keller’s characters got their claws into me. They slipped off the page and burrowed into my brain as people I knew and cared about. The story itself is gritty and raw and so real I swear that Keller followed me around and implanted a recording device in my head, capturing my own thoughts and experiences as I dealt with my ex-husband and my own childhood issues.
I kept thinking, how much longer can this story go on, because it’s so real? What else could possibly happen? And it was obvious. Nothing good could happen. So, one day I avoided the book, because I didn’t want to know what bad things would happen to Tess. She had become more than a two-dimensional character. She was me. She was my best-friend in high school, the one who popped a bunch of niacin to get the crank out of her system before the impending drug test she faced. But at the end of the day Tess called to me and I had to know what happened to her. It was a story I couldn’t stay away from.
Waiting for Spring made me laugh. It made me angry. More than once it made me blush and then concede, “Yea, that’s how it is.” And more than once I cried, though I tried desperately not to. As soon as it was over I wondered what the second book would bring and nearly decided not to read it whenever it comes out because I don’t want to know when anything else bad happens to Tess.
But I will buy it because I know Tess, she is so strikingly solid, as are all of Keller’s characters, that she cannot be ignored.
Keller’s powers of observation and her ability to communicate that to the written page are stunning and unsettling. If you have lived a life of any kind of hardship you will feel as though Keller was there, hiding in the bushes, taking notes. I told my husband, “What Gabaldon does with minute, physical detail Keller does with emotional detail. And sometimes it feels a little too personal, as though she’s airing my own dirty laundry.”
But dirt and grit and all, you can’t help but love Tess. **If peppers were indicators of how explicit a book is....1-5, 5 being the hottest...this one might have six! For Language and ....sexual encounters.