The Banks of Certain Rivers - Jon Harrison

Release Date - March 2013

Jon Harrison
Lake Union Publishing

Book Review by Tracy Farnsworth

In one moment Neil Kazenzakis' world is torn apart. He's attending a conference and brings his wife and son with him. During the presentation, a medical chopper lands in the resort's acreage and someone is whisked away. Soon police officers inform Neil that his wife's finger got stuck on a grate at the bottom of the resort's pool. She's alive but not in good shape.

A few years pass. Neil's wife remains unresponsive in a long-term care facility. His son's acclimated to the tragic events after much-needed counseling. The two visit her as often as possible and remain active in the school where Neil teaches and his son is soon to graduate.

Neil has his secrets though. He's been seeing his ailing mother-in-law's home care nurse regularly. Neil isn't sure how to tell his son that he's fallen in love. His son finds out around the same time a video is released of Neil that threatens his job, friendships, and relationships. Neil suddenly finds himself struggling to find his footing in a town that seems adamant that he's a horrible person and with a son who suddenly wants nothing to do with him.

The Banks of Certain Rivers is emotional, engaging, and hard to put down. There are mistakes Neil makes that had me cringing, but he's human with a lot on his plate. When it comes to summer reads, this is a very touching novel. I shed a few tears at the end and definitely felt like every moment reading the book was time well spent.


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