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The Cove - Ron Rash The Cove is a good book. The writing is beautiful, the characters all spark emotions in the reader, and the story itself reminds me of an old heartbreaking mountain ballad. Really, if I could rate on writing alone, this story would deserve far more stars than I can give it.

This book is sad. The whole story drips with incredibly deep lonliness and sadness, and I knew from the first page of the first chapter that this dolefulness was never to be lifted. There are very few happy times in this book, and because the story is so melancholy, those happy parts do glimmer all the more brightly. Still, even the happy parts are muted, because it has been made clear that they will be swallowed up whole by the "lonesomeness" of the cove and by the predictably heartbreaking trajectory of this story. I can appreciate Ron Rash's skill in crafting this sadly beautiful tale, but I just don't like sad stories! They hurt me too much, and tap into places in my heart that I just don't like to go.

Aside from the fact that this book is sad (which I realize is a pretty unfair thing upon which to rate a book), I also found it to be slow. I kept waiting for the story to start, and by the time I got to the end, I realized I was still waiting. Everything just unwound at a snail's pace, and that slowness, coupled with the penetrating sadness, just left me appreciating this author's beautiful writing and fantastic way with words, but it didn't really leave me appreciating this story.