Monday, September 15, 2014

Walking on Water by Richard Paul Evans

I am sure that fans of Richard Paul Evans already finished his 5 book series THE WALK.  Despite the last book Walking on Water being published in spring, I did not get a chance to read it until last week.  For those unfamiliar with the series, it tells of fictional Alan Christoffersen's walk from Washington state to Key West, Florida after his young wife's death.  As Alan relays in the first book, he needed to get as far away from their life together and his grief as possible, and he believed the walk was a way he could escape.  What he discovers along his journey is a chance to feel again through the people he meets.  It is a slow journey, often interrupted by crisis and illness, but in the end Alan knows he will be able to face life just as he has faced every length of the trip --- one step at a time.  

What I enjoyed most about the series were the little quips, some of them pithy and some of them humorous, that begin each chapter.  These quotes are supposedly lifted from the journal that Alan keeps as he travels.  I also liked the short chapters of each book; only a few pages long, reading them reminded me of eating potato chips.  You hardly noticed that you'd just finished another one, and of course, you just had to dip in for another one! Can't read just one!  What I didn't like about this particular book is that at times it almost read like a Florida map with motel/restaurant advertisements down the side.  While the first half of the book had a very serious story line about Alan's father, the second half just seemed to list where Alan walked, ate, and slept.  The previous books provided lots of local color filled with interesting people with their own side stories.  This volume seemed to alternate between rushing to the big Key West finale and crawling there.  Now that the series has finished, I will give a highly recommended rating to new readers. I think any reader who starts now will easily move through all five books, getting much more out of Alan's story than those of us who had to wait months between each book.  I was able to get all five books at my local library and I am sure that most libraries have purchased THE WALK series.  

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