Monday, October 15, 2012

Bryson City Tales (book review)

And here comes the book review that I promised to have ready last week! (Oopsie.)
I just love the cover. So peaceful and serene.

Bryson City Tales is the first in a series of three books (Bryson City Seasons and ...Secrets are the second two.) chronicling Walt Larimore's adventures in the Great Smoky Mountains. (Am I the only one who immediately thought of Christy when the Smokies were mentioned?)
Walt, with his wife, Barb, and his two-year-old daughter Kate in tow, is in for a surprise when he begins practicing in Bryson City -- his years of extensive schooling didn't prepare him for life in the mountains. The young doctor and his small family have to deal with the predudiced older doctors, unheard-of ailments, and even a gruesome murder or two to keep things really interesting.
Bryson City Tales is a delightful book stuffed full with vivid descriptions of the people and places in Bryson City. The writing transports you to a simpler time, and within minutes you'll find yourself engrossed in the cozy world of the Larimore family. This book had me holding my breath, fingers crossed - rooting for Walt all the way as he fought to prove himself to the doctors and patients alike. There were situations funny enough to make me laugh while reading - and there were times when things got very serious, and I found myself reading faster and faster, wanting to know what was to become of my favourite characters.
This trilogy by Walt Larimore will appeal to lovers of James Harriot, as his Bryson City novels follow much the same style. (also, if you're a fan of Catherine Marshall's Christy, you'll enjoy re-visiting the mountains she loved, some 65 years later.)
I'll give Bryson City Tales an 8/10 for times the book read more like a collection of short stories than one novel, but there was enough connection to keep me satisfied.
Rating the characters is going to be a bit odd, because this trilogy was based off of a true story (and thus all the people mentioned are real or have been based off of real people.) In any case, I'll still give them a 9/10 for being so realistic, quirky, funny, and downright endearing most of the time. After reading this book I felt as though I knew the characters -- I'd gladly move to a town that housed people like these. (in most cases, that is. There are some characters that I wouldn't want to live next to...)

    I recommend this wonderful book to anyone looking for a light but engaging read - you won't be disappointed.

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