At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen

March 30, 2015 Historical Fiction, World War II 18

Hello Bookworms!

I wish I could say that there was a tried and true way to pitch me a book that will guarantee I read it. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. However. Your odds are VASTLY improved if you have already written a book I loved and if the book is set in Scotland. That’s about as close to a Katie-Guaranteed-Read as you can get. Sara Gruen of Water for Elephants fame (which I loved) has a new book out called At the Water’s Edge that just happens to be set in Scotland. Obviously I ran the other way when I heard about it. If by “ran the other way” you mean frantically clicked the “request” button on NetGalley, natch. *I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration from the publisher through NetGalley. May the Loch Ness Monster devour my very soul if this review is anything less than my honest opinion.*


In 1944 Madeline Hyde and her husband Ellis are living the high life… If the “high life” means spending your parents’ money, getting wasted, and making public scenes. After one particularly scandalous New Year’s Eve party, Ellis’s father cuts him off financially. Problematic, seeing as Ellis’s “allowance” is their only form of income. Ellis’s BFF Hank proposes that the three of them make a pilgrimage to Scotland to track down the Loch Ness Monster. Ellis’s allowance-cutting-off father had his own public scandal once upon a time involving said monster, and this is Ellis’s chance to get back in his father’s good graces with the added bonus of rubbing it in his face.

So, because it is a GREAT idea to hop in a boat and cross the Atlantic in the middle of a WAR, Ellis, Hank, and Maddie head off to the Scottish Highlands. The bubble Maddie has been living in is unceremoniously popped en route and upon arrival. Money and distance have separated her from the war, but it’s impossible to escape the rationing, fuel shortages, and air raids in Scotland. Gradually Maddie comes to some important realizations about herself, her life, and her marriage during her Highland adventure, and her life will never be the same.

I know what you’re thinking. “But Katie, is there a hot Scotsman in this book?!” Aye, my Bookworms, there is! Never ye fear! I enjoyed At the Water’s Edgeand I would definitely recommend it to fans of Water for ElephantsIn fact, I found the romantic plot of the two books to be extremely similar… Almost too similar, actually, but not quite. Seriously though, find me a book with a hot Scotsman I don’t enjoy. (No. Please don’t. Don’t ruin hot Scotsmen for me.) If you like Sara Gruen’s writing, hot Scotsman, the Loch Ness Monster, and SECRETS, At the Water’s Edge is your book, y’all!

Let’s chat, Bookworms. About the Loch Ness Monster. Do you think Nessie is real? Hogwash? I’d like to know!

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

18 Responses to “At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen”

  1. Isi

    I have the book, so I’ll read it soon.
    I’m also a fan of Scotland and its men 😀
    Regarding Nessie, Roger and Claire from Outlander explains it pretty well, so that’s my opinion too 😀

  2. Sarah's Book Shelves

    I didn’t love Water for Elephants as much as other people did, so didn’t jump on this one, but I’ve been seeing some great reviews and the premise sounds interesting. Might give it a shot later in the year!

  3. ThatAshGirl

    So I totally slipped on some rocks and fell ass first into Loch Ness…true story. But Nessie is totally for real. I have a picture 😉 Ok I want to believe that Nessie is for real and honestly with how deep and kinda creepy Loch Ness is (it’s totally got a vibe) it’s more than possible. This has been on my to-read list since it got announced. Can’t wait!

  4. Ciska @ Ciska's Book Chest

    Visions of Nessie devouring your soul are kind of funny. Unfortunately no one can come up with reviews the way you do so I am sure it is your honest opinion.
    I saw the book and love the cover. Might pick it up someday as I did enjoy Water for Elephants.

  5. Belle Wong

    I’d like to think Nessie is real! Sadly, I haven’t read Water for Elephants yet. Or At the Water’s Edge. But I do love books set in Scotland!

  6. Katie @ Doing Dewey

    I really hated Water For Elephants, but an unreasonable amount of that dislike was because the part with the elephant was just too sad for me to handle. If nothing bad happens to animals in this one, I’d be willing to give Gruen another try.

    • Words For Worms

      No animal abuse in this one, I think it’s safe. I can’t guarantee you’ll like it, but no elephants or mythological creatures were harmed in the writing of this book.

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