Book Review

Review – Valentin by Elizabeth Wetmore


Mercy is hard in a place like this. I wished him dead before I ever saw his face…
Mary Rose Whitehead isn’t looking for trouble – but when it shows up at her front door, she finds she can’t turn away.
Corinne Shepherd, newly widowed, wants nothing more than to mind her own business, and for everyone else to mind theirs. But when the town she has spent years rebelling against closes ranks she realises she is going to have to take a side.
Debra Ann is motherless and lonely and in need of a friend. But in a place like Odessa, Texas, choosing who to trust can be a dangerous game.

Gloria Ramírez, fourteen years old and out of her depth, survives the brutality of one man only to face the indifference and prejudices of many.

When justice is as slippery as oil, and kindness becomes a hazardous act, sometimes courage is all we have to keep us alive.


Wow. This book. What an utterly stunning debut. Brilliant, raw, riveting in so many ways and unforgettable. This debut novel has taken me by a complete surprise!

Gloria who was only 14 years old was brutally raped and attacked on Valentine’s Day in 1976 in West Texas. The whole book was told from the perspectives of 6 different women in the aftermath of this horrific event. These women may not be directly related to Gloria or the attack but their lives and roles in the 70s, in the male dominated society and in the oil bloom desert of TexasI have perfectly set the scenes for the hard, violent and lonely lives they live. I could feel the scorching sun, the desert heat and the stormy dust, and most of all, the women’s despair and longing for more. My goodness, the whole time I was reading this book I felt like my heart was being squeezed so tight that I struggled to breathe; it felt like there weren’t enough oxygen in the air, it was suffocating. And that’s exactly how this book made me feel. Suffocating.

This book is not an easy read and it will sit heavy on your heart. But what a book this is. Even though some parts of the story felt longer than it needed be but Elizabeth has masterfully written a story set in the dusty Texas with grace and abundance of humanities and heart. I honestly think whoever reads this book will not stop thinking about it for a long time to come.

I want to congratulate Elizabeth for this book and thank you 4th Estate Books for bringing it to life and sending me a copy to read beforehand!

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