Monday, March 2, 2015

Review: The Mason List, by S.D. Hendrickson

An epic love. An epic hate. An epic story that would last a lifetime. 
Today, 8:15 p.m. 
I hurt. I hurt so deeply, I felt the pain searing in my bones and jabbing like a hot poker into my heart. I knew nothing would make it better as the memories pulled from the crevices of my mind, detailing the bad and the ugly, filling my thoughts with regret as I slipped into the darkness. . . 

When I was eight, my mother was dying of cancer, my father lost his job, and the bank kicked us out of our house. I was forced to move to the strange town of Arlis, Texas where my father and I slept in our car in the hospital parking lot. Desperate and hopeless, we lived on fumes of our former life. 

Then one night, everything changed forever. A knock on the car window brought a family into my life that I only wanted to shut out. I hated charity and I hated the Masons. Well, except one. He made it impossible to hate him. 

Jess Mason had the biggest blue eyes and ornery smile of any boy I had ever seen. He was a ray of sunshine in my dark world. A boy full of adventure, dragging me across the meadow of Sprayberry Ranch; a beautiful Texas paradise full of horses and tree houses that got us into more trouble than anyone ever imagined. 

Jess was my everything as a kid until we grew up and the rules changed. Instead of living happily ever after with a boy full of love. . . I destroyed it.
Alex Tanner 

5 out of 5 stars

I've been struggling with writing this review for The Mason List by S. D. Hendrickson because I desperately want to write a review which expresses just how much I love the novel while making you, the reader, want to buy, read and love it as much as I do.  In other words, I really want to do it justice!  

Every once in a while a book takes you on an amazing, incredible journey; one you won't easily forget.  It is not just a love the characters, the location, the references and the personal memories it invokes from you.  When you have a book blog unfortunately you sometimes get in a book funk from reading and reviewing so many books back to back.  It is not that the books we are reading and reviewing are bad, but not all of them will cause this chain reaction of emotions for you.  The Mason List has completely taken over my life for the last week.  Even though I finished it several days ago I still find myself not being able to quit thinking about how AMAZING this story was!  I'm almost afraid to pick up another book because it will have so much to live up to!  The Mason List is without a doubt a hard act to follow.

Alex Tanner was dealt some really difficult cards in her early life, the kind you hope and pray no child should ever have to experience.  Following her mother's unexpected cancer diagnosis and subsequent death, Alex was forced into a life, honestly beyond her control, and in her youth she wasn't ever fully able to understand or even believe things happen for a reason.  Her character is strong, witty and extremely frustrating.  There were times I wanted to punch her for being so stubborn and blind, but at the same time, I absolutely understood where she was coming from.  We all have pride, and while it's a good trait, too much of it can be crippling, and Alex's pridefulness started rearing it's ugly head at such an early age it's almost as if it paralyzed many of her other emotions.

Jessup Mason is my current number one book boyfriend.  If patience and persistence were olympic sports he would have two gold medals and a bonus one just for being so all around awesome.  As a direct result of Alex's mother's condition these two meet at age eight and forge an unbreakable bond.  Even at age eight I could tell Jess was the kind of person who never looks back, he takes life and runs.  What I love most about him is he always remains true to his word.  He is a southern gentleman at his core, loves George Strait and could honestly, just about walk on water in my mind.  

Uniquely told in the present tense but also flipping back to the past, which I love, I have to admit there are not many authors who are talented enough to pull off the time switch and do it so seamlessly.  Ms. Hendrickson's writing is flawless.  Meeting Alex as a happy carefree child with a loving mother, to her first encounter with Jess and then watching them both blossom from kids to adults.  Honestly, it's quite a journey.  In allowing readers to travel from past to present the result is a perfectly complete story.  Readers are given all the details to paint a complete and perfect picture and when the last page is turned you fell satisfied.  There are no unanswered questions or lingering thoughts, you're simply satisfied with a truly unique story which will push you to ponder the cause and effect of circumstances in your own life.   

I feel like saying to much would ruin the book for you, however, I can without a doubt promise it will not leave you disappointed.  Every word from the Prologue to the Epilogue kept me entranced.  Hands down this is an incredible book. It's a love story, so pure and written in such a unique way it will leave you with an epic book hangover. Thank you, S.D. Hendrickson for writing our number one book of 2015 so far.  You are officially at the top!

No comments:

Post a Comment