If the Creek Don't Rise
By: Leah Weiss
Publisher: SOURCEBOOKS Landmark
Publication Date: 8/22/2017
My Rating: 4 Stars (ARC) A strikingly sincere portrait of a town and its buried secrets from an outstanding new voice in southern fiction. In a North Carolina mountain town filled with moonshine and rotten husbands, Sadie Blue is only the latest girl to face a dead-end future at the mercy of a dangerous drunk. She’s been married to Roy Tupkin for fifteen days, and she knows now that she should have listened to the folks who said he was trouble.
But when a stranger sweeps in and knocks the world off-kilter for everyone in town, Sadie begins to think there might be more to life than being Roy’s wife.
As stark and magnificent as Appalachia itself, If the Creek Don’t Rise is a bold and beautifully layered debut about a dusty, desperate town finding the inner strength it needs to outrun its demons. The folks of Baines Creek will take you deep into the mountains with heart, honesty, and homegrown grit.
A special thank you to SourceBooks Landmark and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Review to follow.
“This one nearly broke my heart. With deeply human characters I will not easily forget, Weiss captures the fierce pull of desperation and the formidable power of hope. An impressive debut from a talent to watch…. ” —Kathleen Grissom, author of the New York Times bestsellers The Kitchen House and Glory Over Everything
"Every page of Leah Weiss' debut, If the Creek Don't Rise, has a pulse as fierce and unyielding as its Appalachian setting. Told through an ensemble of narrators, men and women of all ages bound by the inescapable power of place and belonging, it is a lush exploration of the darkest rooms in the human heart, and the brightest fires of the human spirit. Weiss' remarkable gift for language left me breathless, and her characters, distinctive and unapologetically-human, will haunt me for some time." - Erika Marks, author of The Last Treasure
"Writing with a deep knowledge of the enduring myths of Appalachia, Weiss vividly portrays real people and sorrows. A strong, formidable novel for readers of William Faulkner and Cormac McCarthy." - Library Journal
"...tender but powerful debut...highlighting Weiss's considerable characterization skills. " - Publishers Weekly
"Weiss' tale is a beguiling, compelling read. " - Kirkus
"...masterful use of language....Weiss' novel is a great suggestion for fans of the Big Stone Gap books, by Adriana Trigiani, and Mitford series, by Jan Karon." - Booklist
About the Author
My mother was a librarian, and so I grew up in libraries. I worked in them and developed an affinity to books and organization. My father handed me a half-size violin that was hanging on his cousin’s wall and asked me if I’d like to play it—I was eight years old at the time, and it was love at first sight. Later, I pursued my passion for ecology in college and graduate school. I integrated my disparate interests by enjoying a successful career in environmental policy and planning by day and playing fiddle in an American roots band by night.
During my environmental career, I edited and wrote policy and planning documents, technical reports and manuals, regulations, oral and written testimony, briefing papers, journal articles, and public outreach brochures. I became skilled at distilling and presenting technical information to policy makers. On the side, I edited papers, book chapters, resumes, cover letters, promotional materials, CD liner notes, website content, and grant proposals for friends and referrals, and wrote short feature articles for Acoustic Guitar magazine.
In 2013, I decided to expand my professional editing and writing horizons. After completing the Professional Sequence in Editing certificate program at the University of California, Berkeley, I left my office job and went freelance. Since then, I have been working on all types of materials, serving as a copyeditor, developmental editor, proofreader, technical writer, and copywriter. I’m known for being well organized, professional, friendly, and meticulous in my work, and for delivering high-quality product on time. Read More