Title: All the Wind in the World
Author: Samantha Mabry
Pub. Date: October 10, 2017
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Sarah Jacqueline Crow and James Holt work in the vast maguey fields that span the bone-dry Southwest, a thirsty, infinite land that is both seductive and fearsome. In this rough, transient landscape, Sarah Jac and James have fallen in love. They’re tough and brave, and they have big dreams. Soon they will save up enough money to go east. But until then, they keep their heads down, their muscles tensed, and above all, their love secret.
When a horrible accident forces Sarah Jac and James to start over on a new, possibly cursed ranch called the Real Marvelous, the delicate balance they’ve found begins to give way. And James and Sarah Jac will have to pay a frighteningly high price for their love.
My Review & Favorite Quotes
ALL THE WIND IN THE WORLD combines mystery and a hint of magic in a captivating old west setting.
I really enjoyed the plot and premise of this novel. The story moves at a very fast pace, and Samantha Mabry has done a truly remarkable job at incorporating magic into a real-world setting in a way that is not only believable but also interesting.
The underlying mystery that ensues after an accident takes place on the maguey ranch that Sarah and her cousin James find themselves working is intriguing and also a bit dark and twisty. At times this novel even takes on the tone of a psychological thriller. Mabry throws some great curveballs at readers, especially toward the end of the novel, that I found fascinating and highly unexpected.
While there really is a fantastic cast of characters in this novel, I did not enjoy the main character, Sarah. I can see how her contrary personality lends itself well to the mystery of the novel and does make her an unreliable narrator, but I just didn’t enjoy reading through her perspective.
James on the other hand, I very much enjoyed as a character. He was very likable and a lot of fun to read about. Unfortunately the fact that they were cousins was a bit off-putting. While I understand that that is something that was once socially acceptable, it doesn’t seem to be during this novel, because of the lengths Sarah and James go to hide it, which only serves to heighten the reader’s sense of discomfort with the situation.
The setting of the novel was quite spectacular. The desert really feels like a character in and of itself. It is such a beautiful and threatening presence throughout the entire story and really increased the stakes of the overall plot.
As you can see from some of these quotes, Mabry’s writing and prose itself is really quite lovely and oftentimes poetic.
The book cover is quite frankly stunning. It’s a wonderful depiction of the story itself. I love the color scheme, and the way the text feels so impermanent is a great nod to the uncertain future that Sarah finds herself facing in the novel.
While there were a couple of elements that fell flat for me in this story, overall I did enjoy it, and I’m so glad I got the opportunity to read it.
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*
About the Author
Samantha was born four days before the death of john lennon. she grew up in dallas, playing bass guitar along to vinyl records in her bedroom after school, writing fan letters to rock stars, doodling song lyrics into notebooks, and reading big, big books.
she spends as much time as possible in the west texas desert.
A FIERCE AND SUBTLE POISON (Algonquin Young Readers, spring 2016) is her first novel.
Enter the Giveaway
Prize: Win (1) of (2) copies of ALL THE WIND IN THE WORLD by Samantha Mabry (US ONLY)
STARTS: October 2nd, 2017
ENDS: October 15th, 2017
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What are some of your favorite books set in the Wild West?