Without a doubt, Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens was a big surprise for me in 2020. I’d seen that it was on top of the Best Sellers lists on Amazon and other places for so long that I thought I’d buy it and see if it was any good – and WOW I was impressed. Keep reading for my Where The Crawdads Sing review.
Where The Crawdads Sing sees a young woman named Kya left to raise herself in the marshes of North Carolina when her family abandons her at a young age. You follow Kya throughout her life experiencing the beauty and horror of humanity.
Plot – 5/5
Kya begins her life in a house on an island in the marshes of North Carolina. Her family one-by-one leave her to fend for herself from a very young age. This requires her to learn all of life’s important lessons by herself including school, friendship, her body maturing, love, relationships and so much more. This tale absolutely blew me away and made me feel far more emotional and involved in this young woman’s life than I likely had any right to get.
Kya experiences horrible people, she experiences wonderful people and all of them form her personality throughout the novel. There are moments in the novel that involve her trying to contact her family as she was so young when they left, she doesn’t know why and wants to find out. Throughout the novel, you find out why and this just builds upon the already incredible journey she is going through growing up.
All of these aforementioned struggles, tribulations and learnings that Kya has to go through is played out whilst the book alternates between two timelines. One documents her life growing up – the other is “present-day” where a murder has happened in the local town and Kya slowly becomes the prime suspect. All of this adds up to be a story that I simply couldn’t put down.
Characters – 4.5/5
When you’re writing a book where its sole purpose is to show the good and bad of humanity, you have to have the ability to write good characters and Delia Owen can! There are characters in this book that you’ll hate, there’re characters in this book that you’ll love – there are even characters who you’ll love and then hate and vice versa.
These characters define who Kya turns out to be and so each of them having distinctive personalities was crucial to making you care. Now can I sit here and say that each and every character was fleshed out? Not quite, the two police officers involved in the case at the start are fairly thin and I felt like they were fairly generic. However, everyone else in this book had just the right amount of depth to feel believable.
Where the Crawdads Sing summary – 5/5
This book was a bit of a shot in the dark for me. I had literally no idea what the plot was, I just kept seeing it appear in the ‘Best Sellers; list and so picked it up to see what all the hype was about. I’m very glad I did as it opened up my eyes to trying more novels of which other people’s recommendations are my only basis.
I’d thoroughly recommend this book to just about everyone – it is emotional, inspiring and utterly encapsulating.