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Showing 1-10 of 600 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 859 reviews
on July 21, 2016
This book is so darn good! Excellent story and some of the best writing I have read in a long time. The writing was tight--not a word wasted. My heart was racing and I was on the edge of my seat for parts of this book. Mr. Cash handles multiple narrators and moves back and forth in time like a pro. I believe this is his first book. Amazing!
The story takes place in the mountains of North Carolina in the mid-1980's. It is narrated by an elderly woman, a young boy, and the 60-ish town sheriff. The voice of each narrator is different and believable. The story revolves around a secretive fundamentalist church with a sketchy preacher. People die there. A faith healing on a developmentally disabled mute boy goes terribly wrong. The consequences for his family and the town are deep and tragic. To say more would ruin the plot.
I ate this book up! I talk about it to anyone who will listen. Read this book! You won't be sorry. (I'm carrying on like I am related to the writer. I'm not).
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on August 5, 2014
I came away from reading this book just generally down. It's a depressing read. I knew going into it that this was not going to be a hearts and flowers book but the whole book just was one long road to a black pit. SPOILER ALERT - don't read any further if you don't want any've been warned..... OK so my main issue is that I could not in any way rationalize WHY a mother would allow something awful to happen to her child in the name of religion. I know - call me naive or whatever - but I could not in any way identify with the mother and it REALLY saddened me that the child was a special needs child that could not speak so could never have spilled any secrets anyhow. The child was so trusting and when he needed his mother the most she lost her mind because she was having and intimate relationship with her preacher?? Then the whole book kept going downhill and got more disturbing and dark. UGH. Really not for me at all. I gave it 2 stars and the actual writing was well done but the story was just dark, sad, depressing an generally awful.
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VINE VOICEon April 2, 2013
I finished reading A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash last week but I needed to digest it and think about it for awhile before I wrote my review. Even now I struggle to find the right words to describe this beautiful and tragic book.

Jess Hall is a nine year old boy growing up in the mountains of North Carolina. His older brother Christopher, a mute, has a "special day" at the church his mother attends but where children are not allowed. Jess, very protective of his older brother, sneaks to the church to spy on what is happening with his brother. Jess observes evil and the spiraling consequences will tear a family apart yet set up the opportunity for the healing of a community, a church and a boy.

Told through the voices of Jess, Adelaide an old woman who used to be a member of the church where Jess's mother attends, and Clem the sheriff--each of whom know various aspects of the truth, the reader gets to experience the whole story. Their stories combine as their histories in the small community twist together and turn into disaster but with the chance of redemption.

Wiley Cash is a writer who inspires deep, heart-wrenching emotion and brings a place to life with awe-inspiring, lyrical language. His characters are terribly real and the emotions so intense and honest that it's hard to believe it's fiction. Cash has earned his place with the greats. My husband rarely reads fiction but I forced him to read Leif Enger's Peace Like a River and I will force him to read A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash.
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on April 11, 2017
This is one of the best books I've read this year. It's a wonderful story, evocative of the Appalachian region, and of a family's reaction to betrayals. The writing is beautiful and it's a very thought provoking tale. My one word of caution is that if you insist on a classical Hollywood ending, you won't quite find it here. But do get the book, and read it. You'll be glad you did.
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on March 8, 2014
Nice for a debut novel, but the storyline was weak and relied too much on most readers natural inclination to dislike the snake toting preacher. The character development was very well done. There are a number of very memorable characters in this novel. The characters were just not very well stitched together into a story. The plot line in this novel seemed like a pile of nothing. The villain, while well crafted, did not seem to fit into the story very well. There was nothing convincing presented as to why these people would accept such a creepy preacher. The main love relationship in the novel just defies belief. The reader would have to be thoroughly convinced that Southern religious people are total idiots to believe this plot line. The ending is a total zero. I just don't get all the 5-star reviews. Mr. Cash is definitely a promising novelist; however, a brilliant novel requires a compelling story as well as character development, and unfortunately the story line in this novel was left for dead.
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on April 18, 2014
This is not the typical kind of book that I love, there are no subtle metaphors, no beautifully written analogies, no flowery prose. It is written simply, in first person, told from multiple points of view in the vernacular of a community that inhabits a small "Hillbilly-type" North Carolina mountain town. The story swirls around a tragic event that effects a young boy, his family-- and ultimately the entire town. The author has an uncommon ability to inhabit the mind of his characters, in particular that of an eight year old boy. He is able to describe his thoughts, his beliefs and his interpretation of events in a way that will most certainly tap into childhood memories of your own.

The story is told a bit out of sequence, there are flash-backs, within flashbacks. Sometimes, the same scene is re-written from the perspective of a different character. It is not a complicated story, it is a quick and enjoyable read. You have no doubt been to museums and have seen various works of art: There are some paintings where every brush stroke is purposeful, a complex, intentional and integral part of beautifully detailed masterpiece. The are also works of art that are just a quick simple gesture of the hand, a wisp of charcoal across a sheet of paper. Beautiful in it's simplicity. I did not expect to appreciate this book, my interpretation of the first few pages made me feel a bit like a snob. I'm so glad I kept reading. You will be too. A great way to spend a rainy weekend.

My only criticism, it that on the kindle version, the story ended at around 84%, the rest of it being acknowledgments and a sneak peak at the authors other work. Had I known, I would have budgeted my reading accordingly.
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on July 19, 2012
This is the biggest surprise ever. I felt thru out the book I was there. I felt the pain of each character. There was not one word I would delete. I recommended this to friends and they loved it as well. The way it changed between three characters, very different people, ages, but such an amazing story. Now, The first chapter, tends to throw you off a bit, as you might think this is all about snakes, but one more chapter and you're hooked. Best book I have read in a while. First novel for this author ?? How can he go up from here ?
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on March 1, 2017
Excellent characters that pull you into the story. Each character was unforgettable and the interweaving of them into the story made this a very interesting and memorable read.
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on April 7, 2017
Give us more, Wiley!

This is how storytelling should be and was a true work of art to take in. I highly recommend it.
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on July 24, 2014
First off, let me say that I can not understand how this book got over 300 five star ratings!! It was a very simple plot made utterly confusing and boring by the individual characters' account of what happened or what caused things to happen. Each one started off okay, but every time I thought that someone might be telling something important they would go off on a tangent of happenings that might or might not have anything to do with the story (I'm really not quite sure since I kept getting lost in unimportant details)! The ending, which I kind of expected, was very blunt and had no real finality. It was like there were no consequences, and everyone just went off on their merry way. This was one book that I wished I had put down as I was tempted to do many times. I only kept reading because it goes against my grain to not finish a book once I matter how bad it really is. I would suggest to anyone interested in reading this book to read ALL of the reviews, especially the poorer ones to give you an overall feel for this book.
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