Review: The Ice House by Laura Lee Smith

Title: The Ice House
Author: Laura Lee Smith
Pages: 448
Genre: Fiction
Source: Free ARC from Grove Atlantic

Rating: 4.5 stars

Note: As stated under the Source (above), I received this book for free from Grove Atlantic via NetGalley. I pride myself on writing fair and honest reviews.

Review: First off, the blurb about this book is terrible. It doesn’t come close to doing the book justice. Which is why I refuse to summarize it because I’ll probably tank it, too. But I’ll tell you what it’s really about. It’s about family, love, connection, forgiveness, loss, and second chances. It’s about the lengths a parent will go to for their child, including letting go if it’s what’s best for them. It’s about different kinds of family, the kind you’re born to, the kind you marry into, the kind you make, and the kind you find at work (or church, or book club, or…). It is lovely. You must read it.

The author’s writing style is easy to sink right into. And even though the book is only moderately paced (it isn’t a thriller people), at no point did I feel bored. All of the characters were amazing, and I loved getting to see each of their perspectives as the story moved along. While the story itself spans a very short period of time – a couple of weeks or so – a great deal is covered in that time period: Johnny’s illness and how that affects he and his wife, as well as his strained relationship with his son, the OSHA fiasco that puts their business at risk, Johnny’s relationship with his ex-wife and her long-time second husband, Pauline’s feelings about aging and having never had a child, and the list goes on and on. It is lovely. You must read it.

Honestly, I don’t feel like I’m doing this book justice. It is so much more than I expected, and I love it when a book surprises me. This is one of those books that I put off for a bit not knowing what I was missing out on. If you have it on your TBR, I suggest you bump it up if you can. If you don’t have it on your TBR, you might want to reconsider. 😉

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