Monday 29 June 2020

Owens, Delia "Where the Crawdads Sing"

Owens, Delia "Where the Crawdads Sing" - 2018

This book has been recommended to me by so many friends and even though my TBR pile is growing constantly, I just had to pick it up when I came across it in a local bookshop. The choice of English books there isn't always great, so this already says a lot. I'm usually very sceptical about books that everyone praises because I don't often like them but this was different.

I think reviewing this book is one of the toughest I ever had to do. I don't want to spoil it for anyone but it's not easy to write about it after you read it all. I should have written my review before reading the last chapter.

Anyway, a great story about Kya, a girl that is left all alone by her family, one after the other leaves and she has to fend for herself at the age of nine. The villagers don't look favourable at her, to say it mildly.

In a way, there are two stories, one when Kya is a child and one when she is 19 and a murder has happened. Needless to say, it doesn't take long until she is the main suspect. The two stories are told alternately until they eventually merge together. I love that way of storytelling.

We get to know Kya not only as a very resourceful person, very down to earth, but also as a wonderful artist who gets her rightful acknowledgement in the end

I will now go on talking about the rest of the book in the spoiler section. If you have not read the book, don't open it.


If you look for a page-turner, an unputdownable book, I can heartily recommend this one. I hope Delia Owens will write more books. Maybe I'll try one of her memoirs, "Cry of the Kalahari", "The Eye of the Elephant", or "Secrets of the Savanna".

From the back cover:

"How long can you protect your heart? 

For years, rumors of the 'Marsh Girl' have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.

Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps."

"Where the Crawdads Sing" has been chosen favourite book of the year 2019 by the German Indepent Bookshops.


  1. On one level, this book seemed so unrealistic. But after living where I’ve lived the past 10 years, I’m not so sure something like this couldn’t happen.

    1. I grew up in a small village in Germany and anyone who didn't at least one set of great-grandparents from there would always be treated like a stranger. Believe me, it is totally realistic.

      But I'm glad you say so, sometimes you think do you lose your sense for reality?

      Thanks for stopping by.

  2. You wrote a great review of a great novel!

    1. Thank you, Judy. It was one of the hardest one I ever wrote, that probably means it was one of the best books I ever read. I tried to find your review because somehow I thought you were one of the many friends recommending the book but I couldn't find it. If you have a link, let me know. Thanks.

      As always, happy reading!

    2. Here it is:

  3. Thanks, Judy. I'd been looking for it everywhere after I couldn't find a way to "search" for it. Maybe there is one, it just wasn't obvious to me.

    I'll go over there now and I'm sure we agree on the book.

    Have a good weekend.

  4. Perhaps not suitable for my current mood. Cheers

    1. Yes, sometimes the time needs to be right. But there is always next week, next month, next year. I'm sure you'll enjoy it then.

      Whatever else you're reading at the moment, I hope you enjoy it.

  5. Thank you for your review! I skipped the spoiler section as I want read this book sometime in the future.

    Like you, I'm usually very skeptical about books that everyone praises because sometimes they end up not living up to the hype.

    1. You're welcome. That's exactly what the spoiler section is there for. I always try to avoid spoilers but for this one, I just had to mention something. But if you didn't read it, you definitely don't want to know.

      Believe me, this one does live up to the hype. The only other one I can think about where I hesitated first and then loved it very much was The Help by Kathryn Stockett. Sometimes, we just have to give it a try.

      Happy Reading and thank you for visiting.

  6. Replies
    1. I envy you for looking forward to it. This is definitely the best book I read this year.

      Thanks for your visit.