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Elizabeth's Mountain

As someone who has found more than a modicum of magic nestled in the mountains, the opportunity to read this book before publication was like the shining light on the side of the mountain on its front cover: irresistible.

The themes of love and loss are explored deeply across several generations, a moving reminder that both are timeless and fundamental elements of the human condition. Each of the characters is well developed and the prose is poetically composed, leaving the reader captivated at times by the power of thoughts and words when arranged in a way that breaks through an outer shell and burrows deep.

The way the lives of the two main characters, Elizabeth and Amanda, parallel each other while being separated by several generations serves as proof that as much as things change around us with time, what happens on the inside of each of us is universal. The need for love and acceptance never changes.

If there is one thing that kept me from enjoying this offering more, it was the number of plot points and dramatic twists that occurred around every bend. Everything that could happen seemingly did. It almost created a sense of anticipatory anxiety for what might come next, personally keeping me from becoming fully immersed in the emotional ups and downs of each character. While most of the relationship elements in this story were predictable, Ms. Guarino navigated each of them with subtle twists and details that added to the story’s charm.

In the end, my immersion in the setting of this story was more compelling than that of the characters, but that’s only because my personal preference for more depth as opposed to breadth in terms of plot points impacted my experience while reading this novel. For someone who enjoys lots of dramatic twists without becoming distracted by them and the overarching theme of a story, Elizabeth’s Mountain could be one worth exploring.

Dave’s Rating: ☕️☕️☕️


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