The Critique Circle Public Library

Wish You Well
by David Baldacci
Amazon rating
Critique Circle rating 
PublisherGrand Central Publishing
Release Date2000-10-01 (added to CC 24 Aug 2012)
Amazon Sales Rank6,935
Precocious 12-year-old Louisa Mae Cardinal lives in
the hectic New York City of 1940 with her family.
Then tragedy strikes--and Lou and her younger brother,
Oz, must go with their invalid mother to live on their
great-grandmother's farm in the Virginia mountains.
Suddenly Lou finds herself coming of age in a new
landscape, making her first true friend, and experiencing
adventures tragic, comic, and audacious. But the forces
of greed and justice are about to clash over her new
home . . . and as their struggle is played out in a crowded
Virginia courtroom, it will determine the future of two
children, an entire town, and the mountains they love.

Member Reviews
(25 Aug 2012)
A surprisingly good literary novel by Mr. Baldacci. His characters are beautifully drawn, the story pulls you in so very soon in the book you are rooting for the protagonist brother and sister,and the setting, the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia in the 1940s, rings true and very real. He even gets away with heavy use of dialect and phonetic spelling from many of the characters, but after the first chapter or so, I found myself reading those dialogues with ease.

The ending is slightly predictable, and is vaguely reminiscent of the trial scene in "To Kill a Mockingbird" (mainly for th rural setting and the extreme odds the defense lawyer faces in pleading his case), but the resolution is satisfactory. For a picture of 1940s rural America and a heartwarming coming-of-age story, I can recommend this book without reservation.
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