I’m going to start this review with my adoration of Water For Elephant. I loved the story Gruen wove that was equally tragic and beautiful, just talking about it now makes me nostalgic and I want to go and re-read it. Safe to say when I heard about At The Water’s Edge I was pretty excited to get my hands on it. Even more so when I read the synopsis on back: disgraced socialites, a search for the Loch Ness monster, a love story. It all sounds so comical and out there that I was curious to see what Gruen would do with the story, if it could be as poignant as Water For Elephants. Any preconceptions I had were wrong. This book was nothing like what I expected. Even half-way through the book I had no idea what direction the plot would go in. The only initial notion I had that ended up correct was that I was going to enjoy it. Enjoy it was an understatement.
I read this book in two sittings, half in one night and half the next day. The first half of the story passed well enough. I enjoyed the story, the set up of the big adventure, getting to know the characters, in particular Maddie, the main character. I looked forward to the developing love story between Maddie and Ellis. I mean they were already married but it seemed they had hurdles to overcome and they were getting to know each other again in a new way away from interfering forces. I was quite satisfied. Then when I resumed the next day things changed. The story went to a whole new level and I was sitting there like a nutty person exclaiming loudly to myself. It just pulled me in. I devoured the rest of the novel in no time and was left in a state when it was all over. Gruen managed to do it again, she sucked me in, made me care for the characters in a way I didn’t imagine possible at the beginning and left me with a deep affection for this novel.
If you are a fan of tragic, yet beguiling love stories then this is the book for you. Gruen is an enthralling storyteller and has a real talent for making you really care about the characters as if they are real people. I give this book five Loch Ness monsters, though apparently we can’t even locate one.