Today I’m reviewing a novel by my friend C.H. Armstrong, whom I’ve gotten to know really well through Penner. She is a wonderful person, and a great writer. Without further ado…
The Edge of Nowhere is like Gone with the Wind meets Little House on the Prairie. Victoria, the main character, is a woman so full of grit, and determination it was interesting to read, although at times I did find her too cold to connect with, which, I suppose, was part of the point. She will do anything to survive, and makes choices I don’t think I could make, while avoiding options I would have found more natural, like asking for help. She goes through trauma after trauma, tragedy after tragedy. She is determined to survive, but at what cost? Her choices and the attitude she has towards weakness end up getting the better of her, in my opinion. She is alive, and so are most of her family members, but she has by then lost part of her humanity. The Edge of Nowhere was not an easy read for me, as I found myself very emotional, knowing there probably wouldn’t be a Happily Ever After.
What I loved: The relationship between her and Will. Actually, Will was just wonderful on his own. But the interactions between them made me chuckle out loud, or smile broadly on more than one occasion! I specifically am thinking of the morning love scene, ha ha. And the black-eyed-Susans. Sigh. Lovely. Really, for me, the relationship of Victoria and Will was the best part of the story. My pal C.H. Armstrong writes their romance perfectly, so well, in fact, I’m going to demand she write a romance with a HEA for readers like me! I already miss reading about the two of them together.
I also enjoyed how the dust bowl scenario was brought into the story itself, as well as the tornado scene. Very gripping indeed, and not events I read much about. The way she weaved in historical events was well-done.
Besides the fact that I rarely give 5 stars, I felt the story could have used a little less summary in parts, especially in areas where there were dates and names. Also, I wanted more description of certain things, specifically pertaining to their time period and location to really put me there. I wanted more description of food, how things tasted and smelled, how things felt, what they wore, etc…to ground myself. I loved the part where C.H. describes the wedding gown.
In summary, The Edge of Nowhere is a tale of resilience, of stubbornness, and grim determination. 4 stars for this debut novel.
C.H. (Cathie) Armstrong is a 1992 graduate of the University of Oklahoma and holds a B.A. in Journalism with a minor in History. Born and raised in Oklahoma, Cathie currently resides in Minnesota with her husband and their two children. She enjoys reading and writing, and is happiest when curled up in a comfortable spot and lost in the pages of a good book. The Edge of Nowhere is her first novel.
Visit her bio on Penner here.