Not Quite Paradise
By Nicole Baart
Howard Books, $15.00, 352 pages
Lucas Hudson is not happy with his life. He and his wife live as roommates and divorce seems inevitable. Throwing himself into his work, Lucas agrees to act as temporary coroner when a local man commits suicide. When a second body is discovered, Lucas is convinced that it is Angela Sparks, a local girl who was close to his wife, who went missing eight years prior. Despite warnings from the police, Lucas starts investigating and unraveling the threads of the past, hoping to find resolution.
Sleeping in Eden is a highly readable book and a wonderful look into the effects that grief and silence have upon people. Lucas is a great main character and is at once endearing and frustrating as he tries harder with each chapter to hold onto his wife and get things back to the way they were. The mystery aspect of the book is told as a parallel story and is equally as interesting as the main storyline. The writing is beautiful and instantly draws the reader in and envelopes them in the story. This is a book that the reader will finish with regret (because it is over) and will remember for days afterward.
Reviewed by Barbara Cothern