if the creek don’t rise by Leah Weiss is quite the debut novel. i will 100% admit that i was interested in reading this book because i loved the cover photo. this is a gritty, emotional portrayal of the life and struggles of an apalachian community that was told with depth and sensitivity.
leah’s characters are crafted so exquisitely i felt like i was in their kitchens or on their front porches listening to them tell me about their lives.
sadie blue is the protagonist and though she is beaten down and has had a life no one would envy, i could tell she was a spitfire meant for great things. i honestly couldn’t help but get wrapped up in her story. she was at times familiar as a character. her struggles – while most of the time completely foreign to me – were at times something i think most young women could find something in common with. she is poor, poorly educated, hopeful, naive, and trusting despite her situations. leah wrote sadie in such a way that you have to root for her.
the cast of characters at her side are all supportive (save for her husband) in their own ways and in learning about their lives which happens via their own chapters which occur throughout time and simultaneously with sadie blue’s life we learn how the events that shape the resolution of this story had been put into place years prior.
i cannot recommend this book enough. it was a quick read for me and though the tension was slow to build overall, the intense bursts of drama that were placed in the story so expertly make it hard to believe this is leah’s first work!
4.5/5 stars from this girl!