Eli Landon has returned to Bluff House after a long year. He was accused of murdering his wife, he lost his job and has dropped a lot of weight. Normally his grandmother would be in residence but several months prior there was an accident and she has been staying with the family to recover. Eli is alone in the house hoping to put his life back together and write a book. He has written some short stories but this will be his first go at the full length thing. He is hoping the peace of being back at a place he has long thought of as a home will heal him and his soul.
Abra does a bit of everything. She cleans houses, makes jewelry, runs errands, teaches yoga, gives massages and does whatever else is needed of her. She has been keeping Bluff House open and aired out for Eli’s return. She has left an awful past and has taken safe harbor at Whiskey Beach. Now it is hard to pin her down because doing anything and everything is what keeps her sane and happy. But maybe after spending some time with Eli she is ready to take a chance at love again.
Mixed in with Abra and Eli’s relationship is a mystery. As with most Nora Roberts books there are several things happening at once with the mystery. That is not to say it moves very fast though. This is a long book, at almost 500 pages. There was a significant amount of downtime and introspective thinking going on in that 500 pages. Like a lot. It was a little too easy to skip over large paragraphs and sometimes even pages.
I think one of my biggest issues with Whiskey River is there seemed to be an assumed story that had already happened prior to this book. It was like Eli was a fan favorite and this was his coming around story. Like we had been with him for years and now we finally get to see him in a happy relationship. But that isn’t the case. This was our first time with Eli. I didn’t know him before so maybe the importance of him moving on with his life was lost on me.
Abra was well….I don’t know how to describe her. She is very pushy and forthright. She had a habit of leaving post-its everywhere and while they were supposed to be little picks me ups they were kind of bossy and annoying. Like there would be a post-it on a bottle of water telling Eli took hydrate first before he drank something else. She wasn’t his mother, she was his lover but those notes came off as something a mother would do.
Their relationship is interesting. I wasn’t sure why they hooked up. Things came across as more of a relationship of convenience, like oh she is there, he is there…might as well be there together. Even the “I love you’s” were off. They were casual and half-hearted. When Abra said it, it completely matched her personality. Casual and blase. I wasn’t feeling it like they were saying it.
I think I have just come to prefer J.D. Robb over Nora Roberts. I can see hints of the other in each book but overall her In Death series is stronger, to me. Or maybe it is just her individual titles that don’t appeal to me any longer. Either way, this book was ok. There is a good mystery and it wasn’t an obvious who-dun-it. That part kept me reading to the end. Final grade- C
“I don’t believe in fate, in destiny, in absolutes, but sometimes it smacks you in the face. You’re where you’re meant to be because you’re meant to be there.”