Book Review: Reflection by Diane Chamberlain

If you browse through my reviews, you’ll find a lot of Diane Chamberlain books on there. Just goes to show how much I like her style of writing, doesn’t it?

I chanced upon this at my now-very-irregular lunchtime library run. I’ve started reading on the Kindle far more, and work has been really busy, plus I’m late most days in the mornings, so I make up for it by minimising my lunch time. It’s been fine apart from the fact that I don’t seem to reach the library these days. So, where was I? Oh yes, I found this book on one of my lunchtime library run. And having enjoyed Chamberlain before, picked it up without checking reviews on Goodreads.

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Rachel Huber has not been to Reflection, a small town in Pennsylvania Dutch country, for twenty years, when a terrible incident forced her to leave the place she grew up in. Now, twenty years later she comes back to nurse her ill grandmother, Helen, who was struck by lightening. Rachel, a teacher by profession, comes back to a town still stuck in the tragedy that happened then, and realises that most people still held a grudge and held her responsible for what happened then. While she had expected some amount of it, the scale of the hatred that she faced left her shaken. The town hadn’t moved on at all, but then how easy it, to move on? When families have been destroyed, lives uprooted…

Thankfully for Rachel, she’s not completely alone in an antagonistic town, she has support in her old childhood friend Michael and unexpectedly, her grandmother Helen, with whom she realises, she shares a lot more than she had realised. Her time in Reflection, for Helen, becomes a time for coming to terms with her past, to stop running away from the ghosts of her past and facing up to the demons that haunt her. A beautiful story of love, loss and forgiveness.

A beautiful book, full of sub plots, and intricate relationships. It had so many elements to it, so many layers and yet, everything beautifully balanced, an absolute page turner, keeping the suspense going until the very end. Characters you empathise with, characters you understand, even when they have completely divergent stands or points of view. The title especially, I felt was very apt. This will be one of my favourite Diane Chamberlains so far. I’ve found that her books are advertised as ‘Jodi Picoult type’ books, but I do think that she has a flavour of her own, a style that I quite enjoy.

A 4/5 for me.

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