My To-Be Read List is a meme hosted by Because Reading is Better Than Real Life where at the beginning of the month visitors can choose which book I’ll be reading this month. On the first saturday of a month the poll will be up, then on the second saturday of the month I’ll announce the book that won and on the last saturday of the month I’ll post my review of the book.
The top-selling, beloved indie author of Ten Tiny Breaths returns with a new romance about a young woman who loses her memory—and the man who knows that the only way to protect her is to stay away.
Left for dead in the fields of rural Oregon, a young woman defies all odds and survives—but she awakens with no idea who she is, or what happened to her. Refusing to answer to “Jane Doe” for another day, the woman renames herself “Water” for the tiny, hidden marking on her body—the only clue to her past. Taken in by old Ginny Fitzgerald, a crotchety but kind lady living on a nearby horse farm, Water slowly begins building a new life. But as she attempts to piece together the fleeting slivers of her memory, more questions emerge: Who is the next-door neighbor, quietly toiling under the hood of his Barracuda? Why won’t Ginny let him step foot on her property? And why does Water feel she recognizes him?
Twenty-four-year-old Jesse Welles doesn’t know how long it will be before Water gets her memory back. For her sake, Jesse hopes the answer is never. He knows that she’ll stay so much safer—and happier—that way. And that’s why, as hard as it is, he needs to keep his distance. Because getting too close could flood her with realities better left buried.
The trouble is, water always seems to find its way to the surface.
Burying Water is one of those books I heard a lot of good things about before I finally decided to pick it up. I wasn’t sure if this would be a book for me, with the whole memory loss plot line. After reading a few great reviews for books in this series by bloggers I follow and even getting a recommendation for this book based on another book I read I eventually decided to give it a try and I am really glad I did. Burying Water was an enjoyable read and I ordered the next three books in the series before I even finished reading Burying Water.
I don’t usually like memory plot lines as either I feel that the author doesn’t know enough about memory to pull it off or it feels like it’s being used as a plot device only to create drama/ tension etc. Luckily both of those weren’t the case in Burying Water, I felt like the author knew enough about memory to pull it off believable, dropping a line or two about different kinds of memory and why Water remembered certain things and not others and then when she did remember things it was slowly. I thought it was well done and it made for an interesting plot.
Burying Water is very well written and easily pulled me into the story. The first few chapters I was a bit confused until I noticed how the word Now or Then was written at the start of the chapters. Burying Water is told from two point of views, Now which is Water her point of view and deals with her waking up with memory loss and trying to build a new life for herself. Then there is Then which is Jesse his point of view and that tells the story of how he met Water (or Alex back then) and how they fell in love and how she ended up in the hospital. I am really impressed with how the author pulled off the dual pov, the dual times and how it wasn’t confusing at all. Both storylines were very interesting and I didn’t mind the switching back and forth. Its one chapter Now/ Water and then a chapter Then/ Jesse, so you knew when to expect the changes and I felt like the switches were timed well. I had a hard time putting this book down and just wanted to keep reading.
The story was engaging and kept moving along nicely. One thing that bothered me where the two death’s later in the book, it felt a bit too convenient to have them die like that. I had expected some more conflict with one of the characters and I would’ve liked the other one to stay alive, although I can understand why the author felt the need to have that character die. The last few chapters the pace really picks up and things come together. Some things got wrapped a bit too neatly, but overall I liked how things ended and how Water reacted when she learned the truth, it was very believable.
Beside the original way of telling the story, I also thought the story and romance was fairly unique in this genre. It has a slight suspense/ dangerous feel at times, which made the sweet romance stand out even more. It was heartwarming, but also showed how cruel people can be and how even good people can get roped into helping with bad things even if they don’t want to and how things aren’t always what it seems.
Burying Water has an awesome cast of characters and side characters. Both main characters were interesting, although I liked Water almost immediately, it took me some time to warm up to Jesse. I liked how Water is the same on some points to who she was, but also different. I thought she was a nice character and I admired how she dealt with the situation and her memory loss. Jesse is a good guy who lands into a difficult situation and while I understood while he did some things I still wondered if there was a better way to deal with some things. As the story progressed I liked him more, especially when it became obvious how much he cared and did for Water/ Alex.
Every person they meet has their own personality and there were some side characters that I really liked. I think Ginny was by far my favourite side character, she’s a cranky old lady, but she also has a heart of gold and has been through a lot of hardships. Seeing her open up and begin to live again was amazing and I think for both Water and Ginny meeting each other made a big impact on their lives. Then there is Boon, Jesse his best friends who we mostly meet back Then. I didn’t like Boon much at first, but he did grew on me when the story progressed and towards the end he does a few things that made me like him more. It just rubbed me wrong how he’s trying too much to fit into the high end society and get into Rust his good graces. Amber is Jesse his sister and becomes a good friend for Water, I liked how she was there for Water, although I liked her less when she was with her friends. Jesse his parents were also great with how much they cared for Water and helped her adapt to her new life. There were also some side characters I didn’t like, but I am pretty sure the reader isn’t supposed to like those characters.
The romance was both well done, but it still felt a bit off as well. I am strongly against characters acting upon their feelings when their love interest has a boyfriend, is engaged or married. In my opinion you shouldn’t act upon your feeling unless the other relationship get’s broken off. You can mention your feelings, but don’t kiss or do more until things have ended with the other. Here the situation is a bit different, due to who and when the husband is, but it still felt a bit off. I am trying not to spoil anything, but if you read it you know what I mean with the circumstances making it more believable. Aside from that I did think the romance was done well. Things progress a bit quickly in the Now, but knowing their past made that more believable. And they really were a great couple, it was obvious how much they cared for each other.
Another thing I liked about this book is the setting, it doesn’t really get the focus, but I love small town settings and this one was particularly nice with how Water lived surrounded by nature on an old horse farm and I really liked the setting and descriptions of the place. Especially when contrasted to the Then setting which was mostly Portland, I really liked the small town setting of Sisters and how calm and peaceful it was. Also when EWater arrived she easily fit into the community and I liked getting a feel for the small town and how the people communicated with each other.
To summarize: I really enjoyed this book. I expected I wouldn’t like the memory loss issue, but instead thought it was well done. The story is told from two point of views Now/ Water and Then/ Jesse and it really worked. It’s an original way to tell a story and I felt like this book was fairly unique when it comes to romance books. It also has a bit of s suspense/ dangerous feel at times. I really liked the main characters and the side characters. Ginny was my favourite side character, but I also grew to like most of the other side characters. the romance was well done, although the Then romance did feel a bit off to me, even though the situation did make it better and it made for a good story it still felt a bit off. The setting was done really well and I especially liked the small town setting of Sisters with all the nature and mountains surrounding it. All in all this was a great start to the series and I can’t wait to read the next books!