Miller’s Valley by Anna Quindlen
Miller’s Valley is a finely woven family saga narrated by the main character Mary Margaret Miller, aka Mimi. As an adult, Mimi is facing eminent domain of her family’s land and the small town that was named after them. Her family has resided in the town for over 100 years. This is their home, the place they know and love. But the state wants to open up the dam and flood the valley to create a recreational lake area.
As Mimi recollects her time growing up in the small farm town of Miller’s Valley, PA., she starts when she was an 11 year old child. Mimi is a very smart and observant child with a promising future. She is the only girl with two older brothers. There is Eddie, who grew up, got married and moved away. Then there is Tommy who she once looked up to. But Tommy went off to Vietnam and came back a changed person. There’s also a town girl that Tommy got pregnant before leaving. Her Mom and her Aunt Ruth don’t get along even though they live next door to each other. Then there are the conversations she overhears between her parents at night, where they fret because the state is pressuring her father to sell his land. The land that her father farms, the land they live on, the land that also houses her Aunt Ruth who doesn’t ever step foot outside her house.
This is not a long book; as a matter of fact it’s probably just right. It’s something you read while curled up by the fireplace on a rainy day. It has the resonance of one of those small town stories with a retro feel. A glimpse of everyday ordinary lives with love, joy, pain, secrets and most of all, the powerful memories created.
I want to thank the publisher (Random House) for providing me with the ARC through the Goodreads Giveaways program. This is a fair and honest review.