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June 27, 2022

Carolina Moonset by Matt Goldman ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

"What's the story with this painting?  This painting is about the darkest time.  When you can't see any light.  When you can't see a way out.  When you're hopeless.  It's fascinating." (p 166)

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of suspense novel Carolina Moonset by Matt Goldman
May 2022; Forge Books; 978-1250810120
audio, ebook, print (272 pages); suspense

Both suspenseful and deeply moving, Carolina Moonset is an engrossing novel about family, memories both golden and terrible, and secrets too dangerous to stay hidden forever.

I got hooked on this book - especially Joey Green, the main character in the first chapter, and my love of this character never diminished.  This book has it all - family dealing with an aging parent, love, a bit of sex, and a mystery that gets deeper as the book goes on and ends with a surprise ending.  The other plus for me was the beautiful descriptions of Beaufort, South Carolina, one of my favorite cities to visit.

Joey is a 45-year-old divorced man with two children. He's come to visit from Chicago to help his mother take care of his father who has advanced Alzheimer's.  As his father's short-term memory disappears, his long-term memory comes alive.  Most days, he can't remember eating right after he finishes a meal but he can tell long and involved stories about his childhood.  At first, it seems like a blessing to have his long-term memory become so vivid.  But when he starts talking to old friends that aren't there, secrets from his youth come to light.  Even though his hallucinations are from years earlier, the truth could cause damage to many people in town.  Joey starts investigating when an enemy of his father gets shot and his father's gun is missing.  As Joey talks to long-term residents of Beaufort, the mystery slowly unravels but it needs to be better understood so that the wrong people don't get blamed for what happened.

This story really touched my heart and, yes, caused a few tears.  From what Joey said, his father used to be a strongly dedicated doctor who took care of the poor.  To see what was happening to him due to his disease was difficult and I felt the love that Joey had for him and the despair that he was feeling about his disease.  Joey believed that he was not an empathetic person but he was wrong,  The empathy that he showed his parents at this dark time in their lives was wonderful.

Matt Goldman is a new author for me and this book impressed me so much that I plan to read his earlier books soon.

Buy Carolina Moonset at Amazon

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina. She grew up in Michigan but now calls North Carolina home. She enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her family. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and historical fiction. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on Facebook.

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