Gathering of Waters

McFadden, Bernice L

  11 Reviews

A town with the name of Money is sure to attract attention. But the fact that the town itself narrates this mystical story guarantees your absolute attention. At its core are three generations of Hilson women, Doll, Hemingway and Tass, their lives woven into historical events of the area: the Mississippi floods of 1927, the murder of young black man Emmett Till in 1955 and Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

This is the Deep South with racism and the spiritual realm coexisting in an enticing mixture of truth and fantasy. An easy, lively read. [Larger font]

Comments from Groups

Interesting and thought-provoking subject matter. We did find it jumped around a bit plot wise, and it felt a bit contrived at times. There was richness in the spiritual aspects, and a wonderful evocation of the south. Dark subject matter but told in an accessible way. On the whole enjoyed by all. Auckland 166

Reactions to this novel varied quite a lot in our group. One of the group who had visited and loved New Orleans and its surrounding area, liked the book very much; commenting that the mix of Christianity and the belief in evil spirits is authentic in the setting. Auckland 088

Interesting style of writing with the town as the narrator, and the spirit moving from person to person. Some enjoyed it but others weren't comfortable. Nevertheless well written! Paihia 003

A great read. Excellent characters, and interesting pieces of history included. Nelson 021

This wasn't popular with our group. The key theme was lost in the myriad of stories which was quite distracting. We were all familiar with the story and the song though! Cromwell 003

We struggled with the graphic sex scenes, none of the reviews mentioned it. Auckland 338

Really good. We loved the narrator. A great read. Nelson 017



AUCK 133
Collectively we don't like ghosts, but for some reason we had no problem with Esther. We liked the way the town told the story, because it could see into the nooks and crannies that a person could not. Clever use of "a character that wasn't one".
ROTO 002
The racial issues in the book created great discussion, as did Money being the narrator, the role of Esther's spirit and the style of writing. Not necessarily a great book, but thought provoking and discussion provoking.
FERN 001
Worthwhile book for the discussion. Most group members did not enjoy the read but felt that although the book's content was confronting, it was a worthwhile read.
Mixed reaction to this book. Some enjoyed it, others not. Some did not enjoy the spiritual/ghost theme but all agreed it was a good history of the early days of the Civil rights movement. No-one recalled the murder and when it happened. An interesting approach by the author in using the town Money to tell the story.
A magical novel enjoyed by all our members. The story is narrated, unusually, by the town Money, in Mississippi. A very topical story at the moment with all the racial tensions in America. An easy read, with nice big print!
Mixed feelings about this story. Half of us loved it and the other half hated it!
Not a popular book with our ladies, but it did create a lot of discussion.
AUCK 360
A light quick read, interesting but not complex or in depth. Most were disappointed that the murder of Emmett Till was not given the significance it deserved in that the way the story was told diminished culpability. There were loose threads, unanswered questions, and the maligning spirit didn't make sense with inconsistencies in characters it inhabited.
MAST 005
Although most found the story-telling disjointed and were not that much impressed with the book, the discussion proved otherwise and we ended up marking the book higher than expected!
TAUR 036
After a bad start this book did improve and most people enjoyed it. A bizarre chain of events, and it was a very interesting discussion.
MAST 010
Half the group didn't like it - the rest really enjoyed the read. But it did create a lot of discussion!