He never expected to leave, not really, until his only remaining child, Alicia, from whom he has been estranged for those years of his self-imposed exile, calls up unexpectedly after Christmas to drive by and visit him in his out-of-the way cabin.
Author Curtis Edmonds skillfully unwinds a tale of grief, guilt, and mystery, keeping the tension steady throughout the story. There are moments of humor to leaven the sadness. Family dysfunction and misfortune are the backdrops for the story, and, with less craft, could have disintegrated into a maudlin soap opera. It does not. It could have become a pat lesson in perseverance and hope. It does not. Edmonds balances hope and crushed dreams, love and shattered trust, and belief and cynicism on the knife’s edge, producing a beautifully written page-turner.
Some scenes are harrowing, not because of any unnecessarily detailed brutality, but because of the believable descriptions of everyday horrors. Will narrates his story with little embellishment, and, for the most part, an admirable degree of self-reflection about his struggle to keep despair at bay.
The novel is lean, like good poetry, with enough specifics to make it believable, but rarely uses a passage that doesn’t move along the story, the understanding of the characters, or the sense of place and time.
If you appreciate a well-told family drama, put aside the time to read RAIN ON YOUR WEDDING DAY, because once you start, you won’t want to put it down until you’ve finished.
Reviewed by Jodi McMaster for IndieReader