I bought this so that I could participate in my mother's book club when I visited her last week. It gave us more to talk about, and I was able to participate in the group discussion. From the start, it grabs you. The author's beautiful descriptions of the marsh and its plants, birds and animals, is spectacular. The story is excellent, as well. From what I learned in the group, the author started with the ending and worked backwards, going back and forth from the "present" in 1970 to the past, going back to the early '50's. It is a post-Depression story that we who didn't live in those times, don't hear. It is in part what happened to people who were displaced by the loss of income and home, those who had PTSD before it was a known syndrome in those who served in the military, and the separation of those who maintained their status vs those who didn't. Ostensibly it is the story of a child who learns to fend for herself, a murder, and the parts others played in the drama. But it is more. Leading into the ending, for me and for my mother, was a tad rough, but hearing others talk about it, it was not so for them. Highly recommended, whether for a book club or just for an escape to another time.